Which is it for you? Are you looking forward to it or can you not wait for it to be over?
You may be looking forward to it if you are a dad who has young children who are going to make a fuss of you.
You probably aren’t looking forward to it if you are a dad who has grown apart from your children who have left home.
Perhaps you are looking forward to it if you have a good dad.
You may be wishing the day didn’t exist if you had a dad who mistreated you or who wasn’t there for you when you were growing up.
You will be looking forward to it if you get to spend time with your dad.
The day will be hard if your dad has passed away or is no longer with you.
Perhaps you are looking forward to it if you are a dad.
The day may feel painful if you would liked to have been a dad but never got the chance.
Father’s day is seen as a minefield worth avoiding by many in our society. I visited a local primary school recently for an assembly and asked if they wanted me to make it a Father’s day themed assembly. They said definitely not (in a very polite way) as they don’t mention Fathers day because too many of the children don’t have a father at home.
I have a lot of colleagues who won’t be mentioning Father’s day in church on Sunday for fear of causing people hurt and pain.
According to the Office of National Statistics: ‘There were nearly 2.0 million lone parents with dependent children in the UK in 2014, a figure which has grown from 1.9 million in 2004. This increase is statistically significant. Lone parents with dependent children represented 25% of all families with dependent children in 2014, similar to 2004’. (source)
Although some of these lone parents are Fathers (9% according to the report), the vast majority are mothers and Fathers day is very difficult for many of these families.
For churches, Father’s day could be a day to celebrate what it means to be a Father whilst commiserating with, supporting and praying for those who will find the day painful.
In our broken society, should we be reluctant to talk about God as Father on the basis that for many the word father conjures up a negative image? I don’t think so and when I talk about God as father, I like to remind people that
God isn’t just a father, he is the Father!
You see, you may have the most amazing father in the world, but even he can’t show you what God is like.
God is the perfect father who will never let us down.
God is the perfect father who will always be there for us.
God is the perfect father who always loves and cares for us.
God is the perfect father who will always lead and guide us through life.
God is the perfect father who is patient with us when we get things wrong.
This Father’s day, if you feel like you have nothing to celebrate, then I have great news for you.
God is your Father and he longs to adopt you into his family. You can have a Father and he is king of the universe.
God longs to adopt us into his family but how will we respond?