Sunday, June 16, 2013

Fatherly Advice father taught me and said,
    "Hold on to my words with all your heart.
    Keep my commands and you will live." 

-- Proverbs 4:4     

What's the best advice that your father ever gave you? 

That's the question Real Simple once posed to its readers. Here are a few of the responses that the magazine received:
  • If you want something done, ask a busy person to do it.
  • Never try to solve problems at night. They always seem worse than they do in the morning.
  • You don't have to answer the phone just because it rings.
  • Life is better when you have a good time...and bring someone along for the ride.
A father's words can have a profound impact (good or bad) on his home and children. Everything that he says and does--and how he lives out his life--makes an eternal difference on those around him. This was also true for Jesus. He called God (His own Father) "Abba," which translates to Daddy. As Christ-followers, we, too, have the extraordinary privilege of knowing God as our loving Abba. So it should come as no surprise that He has some important advice for His children: you and me.

The Bible--especially the Book of Proverbs--is full of useful advice from wise, God-centered people who traveled the proverbial road of life centuries before our time. And their words to us today are not only insightful, relevant and trustworthy, they're inspired by our Creator.

It's when we finally take God's message to us to heart that we begin a vital transformation process into the men and women He wants us to be. And eventually, we mature enough in our faith that He shows us glimpses of His reality. Like an inquisitive child who's finally learned a lesson or two the hard way, it's then that we begin to see through new eyes.

Unfortunately, we tend to learn a bit too slowly. But our Father fully understood this limitation even before He created the Earth. So to help us grasp His message, He had to fully reveal Himself by literally putting a human face on the divine. He lived out the human experience in the form of Jesus Christ...even if we didn't recognize Him at the time.
"Don't you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time?" Jesus once asked His inquisitive disciple. "Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?"
Jesus' comments were a simple answer to humanity's ultimate question. If we want to know the who-what-where- and-why of God, we first need to know Christ--the One He's already sent to us. Because the more we know and experience the Son, the more we'll need to know and experience the Father.

That's some advice to remember...and live out. After all, He's our Father. And He knows us best.

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