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The Love of the Father

Updated: Apr 29

"See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are" (1 John 3:1, ESV).

This message came at just the right time for this season of my life. We hear it all our lives: "God loves you." It somehow tends to become background noise, and we totally miss the power behind the message. God the Father, who is Himself love, loves you, me, us. And He expresses this by adopting us into His family after He made the greatest sacrifice, his own Son, because of and for us. His sacrifice and His love could not be earned by us. It is given by Him because love is what He is. He is bound to love. It is His identity.

In Luke 15, the parable of the Prodigal Son paints such a true picture of the Father. After all that the wayward son does, all the blessings he squanders, the many ways he ruins his own reputation, and rejects his father, and then ultimately rejects himself, he returns to his father feeling unworthy of being called "son". But the father not only receives Him, He is waiting for him and spots him from far away. His love is patient, but eager for our return no matter what condition we come back to Him in. It is just such a powerful reminder that we can't do anything to be worthy of His love. We are worthy simply because we are His sons and daughters. And the King's kids get perks.

The parable goes on to say the father clothes his son in the best robe, and adorns him with a ring and sandals, and then celebrates the son's return with his fattest cow. His love transforms his son, like God's love transforms us; it "reprograms" us, as Pastor Jim said. His love rewires us, and it takes us from a place of unworthy to worthy. But only He can do that. His love doesn't need you to strive, attain, toil, earn, deserve, perform, drive. Pastor Luke said it so well, "The Holy Spirit guides, fear drives." Our fear drives us to control situations, thinking we can maximize the potential of the moment, the money, the time, the whatever it is we think we can manage better than the Father, much like the prodigal son.

Imagine that. I believe I can control an outcome and make it better than the Father... THE FATHER, the one who created the identity and the potential of His children. Let me repeat, His love doesn't need us to strive or to be driven. Once we choose to receive His love, and die [with His Son], Father God's love will undo us in the sweetest, gentlest, most tender way. We can come and die exactly as we are, and, if we are living in His love, we should not stay exactly as we are. But He will do all the heavy lifting. He will change us. We do not have to change ourselves. We also don't have to be aware of every single thing He wants to free us from. If we just allow Love to live through us, His Holy Spirit will transform us, and heal our sickness, our sadness, our hurt, our striving, our inadequacies, our fractured minds, all of our ugly.

He is our Father. He is patiently but eagerly waiting for our return, not bothered by what we've done. He is waiting to celebrate us, clothe us, adorn us, feed us, transform us. And who, but the Father who loves us, and created us and our potential, can do it better? There is no other love like that, not even that of our earthly fathers. Please don't think yourself so far gone that you reject this Love.

"No matter what is going on in your life, God knows, and He loves you. He still loves you. THAT IS WHO HE IS. I want you to see our Father's love in this. We killed Jesus. We mocked Him. We crucified Him. And yet Jesus was our Father God's only Son, and He not only forgave us, but He went a step further and He adopted us into His family" (Pastor Jim Castle, Father God's Love).

Listen to the whole sermon Father God's Love here.

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