“Who are you?” That was the question Pete Townshend asked a police officer that had recognized him. Pete, guitarist and singer for the English rock band “The Who”, was in an inebriated state and the officer, whom he did not know but that knew him, saved him a night in jail. That encounter was the catalyst for the 1970’s hit song by the same title.
“Who are you?” seems a simple question to answer. Most will typically reference their parents and grandparents for some clarity. It is not so straight forward for those that did not know their dad, are adoptees or in a foster home. For many, the simple question can stir up a plethora of emotions. Interestingly, it is a question that God thought important enough to address with His own Son. At Jesus’ baptism and transfiguration, He said, “This is My Son, Whom I love; with Him I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17 & 17:5). It is important to know who you are and Whose you are.
For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ. – Romans 8:14-17. Paul is providing clarity for who we are and Who our Father is. There are two phases many have to work through before the words spoken through Paul can be embraced. There is a blame phase - blaming an earthly father for a situation or predicament. This is short-lived because it is an excuse, not a solution. The second phase is a battle to overcome a bad home situation or blast out from under a dad’s shadow. This phase can be long-lived as a result of affirmations the world can provide for overcomers. Only when there is submission to the Father as exemplified by Jesus the Christ, can a man connect with what Paul is stating - Embrace adoption as sons by the love of the Father poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit (Rom.5:5).
Our hope is that all – men that had a great dad, men that never knew their dad, adoptees and foster children, will embrace fully the adoption offered by the God we may not know but Who knows us. It is by the love of the Father, the power of the resurrected Son and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit that all have an opportunity to step forward in life as children of God. The God that knew us sent His Son to die for us that we may know Him as our Father.
To this beginning, prayerfully consider participating in one of Faithful Fathering’s summer adventures - Through time in God’s creation, the mountains of Colorado, the focus is on helping men, young men, dads, daughters and sons embrace fully who they are and Whose they are.
Prayer guide: Thank You Lord for Your word and for being my Father. Too often I have taken pride in overcoming a tough home situation and embraced worldly affirmations on the journey. Forgive me. I know Jesus walked in submission to You as He glorified You every step of His journey on this earth. Equip me to follow His example of submission, be led by the Spirit and embrace adoption as a son, an heir of You and co-heir with Christ. Grant me clarity in who I am and Whose I am and help me to glorify You in my family, and pass the baton of faith well to the next generation. Amen.
A faithful father embraces adoption as a son and the love of Abba, Father.