I have four children. Never in their lives have they needed to schedule appointments with me, if they wanted to be with me. They’ve never been required to get freshly showered, groomed and dressed up in their best clothes, if they wanted to see me. I’ve never demanded that they kneel down in front of me, or use only eloquent vocabulary whenever they speak to me. I am their father. My family is free to come see me any time for any reason. They can be with me in any circumstance or any condition ; and we can talk about anything in plain, direct, ordinary language. I always want it to be as easy as possible for my children and myself to be together, and to feel how good it is that we belong with each other.
In the New Testament, God is called our Father 275 times. But in the Old Testament, the Israelites as individuals did not address God as father. As far as we can tell, neither Abraham nor Joseph nor Moses nor David nor Daniel ever dared to call out “my Father – God” when they prayed. In the Old Testament, the awesomeness and holiness of God were presented as paramount—to such a degree that God was perceived as unapproachable. The structure of the tabernacle reinforced for the Israelites this idea of God as unattainable ; the ritual of the temple further intensified it.
When Christ Jesus came to us, He came as God’s Son. That changed everything. If you have united yourself to Jesus, He has made you a son or daughter of God. And because the Lord Almighty is your Father you get all the privileges of being family. You don’t get excluded from Father-God’s presence, no matter what you’ve done or failed to do. Access to Him is never denied you, no matter how big or little your needs. You can bring to your Heavenly Father everything that’s going on with you — from the ugliest things to the most beautiful things — and He’ll take them all to heart. Nothing will escape His attention or be ignored or tossed aside and later forgotten. Your Father makes sure you know that whatever you care about, He cares about.. Because you belong to each other, and family comes first. God is so happy you’re His child, He wouldn’t trade you for anybody.
Adapted by Mary Wilson from Kurt de Haan