The Father I Know.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8 (NIV)

Growing up, my father worked for a seismographic company in Houston, Texas. He dressed in suit and tie and polished dress shoes, smelled of Old English, and toted a briefcase. He eventually climbed the ladder to VP which afforded him use of a company car, and he regularly schmoozed with clients at local restaurants over his lunch hour. 

He left each morning before 8:00 AM and returned each evening around 5:15.

Years ago, rumaging through childhood memories, one of my sisters commented, “That’s not the daddy I remember.”

The oldest of six, her experience with our daddy differs. Before his promotion moved our family to Houston, Dad wore short sleeve shirts, khakis, and casual shoes, and drove a green truck to work. Maybe even brought his own lunch to limit food cost.

But no matter the nature of his work or his appearance, he was -and still is- the same father who never yielded in matters of faith.

What’s true of God doesn’t change either.

One might say, “God is full of compassion.”

And I might respond, “Not to me.”

Another might attest, “He answers prayers quickly.” 

And I might respond, “Not for me.”

Still another, “God is distant. Uninvolved.”

And I might assert, “I sense His presence all the time.”

No matter how I view God, He is the triune, immutable Creator Who does not change like shifting shadows. James 1:17

Joseph’s brothers would have benefitted from hearing this. 

Joseph was the highly favored son of Jacob’s passel of twelve. The less-esteemed brothers had much to say about daddy’s special treatment of their younger sibling– offspring of Rachel, the wife Jacob loved most.

Not a one of Joseph’s brothers would have described Jacob the same way Joseph did.

Peter’s inquiry about his disciple buddy, John, also sheds light on the different father figure concept. 

John was touted as “the disciple whom Jesus loved.” On Peter’s less-emotionally-controlled days, that had to feel like a pebble in his sandal.

Peter turned and saw that the disciple whom Jesus loved was following them…When Peter saw him, he asked, “Lord, what about him?” 

Jesus answered, “If I want him to remain alive until I return what is that to you?” John 21:21-22

History reports that Peter died a martyr’s death—crucifixion—while John lived to a ripe old age and died of natural causes…that after being exiled on the isle of Patmos where he was chosen to receive God’s magnificent Revelation of end times and eternity. 

But what is true for each of these guys? For me? For you?

Jesus came to earth as a baby, was crucified, died, and was resurrected to new life. He is the Son of the living God, offering the free gift of forgiveness for sin to all who call on His name.

He is a wholly good and faithful Father Whose nature doesn’t change based on my view of Him.

In an ever-changing and chaotic world, that’s a mighty good thing.

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3 Comments

  1. Emily Conrad says:

    I was just writing something about that exchange with Peter, John, and Jesus, too. So interesting, isn’t it? But, no matter what, God is faithful and unchanging.

  2. Margaret Eomurian says:

    Because the Daddy I remember has so reflected the characteristics of our heavenly Father, it has never been difficult for me to trust Him or doubt His goodness. What a gift to have an earthly father so like our Father above!

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