I accidentally threw my dad under the bus the other day. I was trying to tell a fictional, first-person story about a guy with a bad father, so I said, “I never had a dad who was loving . . . ” The church got awkwardly quiet. They thought I was talking about my own father. Even worse, my dad goes to our church!
By God’s grace, I had (and still have) a really good dad. He traveled crazy distances to watch me play soccer. He supported my desire for ministry even before he was a churchgoing guy. And he is a wonderful grandpa to my girls.
But I know not everyone has a dad like that. Maybe your dad was demanding and gruff. Maybe he was ashamed of you. Maybe he was a hypocrite who went to church, went home, and hurt your mom. Maybe he showed up for your conception and then bailed for the rest of your story.
If so, I want to introduce you to a prayer Jesus taught. It starts, “Our Father in heaven” (Matthew 6:9). I love those last two words—in heaven. Our God is not an earthly father. Not a flawed, sinful man who fails us in scarring ways. No, God is a Father who is in heaven, where sin cannot exist. He is holy. It is impossible for him to break a promise to you.
Pray that prayer often. Say those words slowly. Having a great father can change your life in powerful ways. Thankfully, you have one. Because he is not just our Father. He is our Father in heaven.