God is Like a Parent Eagle in Three Ways

“Like an eagle that stirs up its nest, that flutters over its young, spreading out its wings, catching them, bearing them up on its pinions” (Deuteronomy 32:11) https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deuteronomy+32%3A11&version=ESV

This simile is a favorite of God’s in His Word for His people, who at this time lived near mountains and watched the eagles high above raise eaglets in their nest to teach them to fly and soar.

http://www.foxnews.com/great-outdoors/2017/06/21/bald-eagle-takes-bait-swipes-salmon-from-fishing-boat.htm

Just like a parent eagle with us God does three things:

  1. He stirs up our nest.
  2. He hovers over us.
  3. He spreads out His wings to swoop down and catch us, bearing us up on His wings.

First, He stirs up our nests. Although God is tender to make us a nest, He is also strong to stirs us out of it to learn to fly. Has God been stirring up your nest? Perhaps He is sending out your children, or teaching you to fly to build your own nest.

Second, He hovers over us. As we mature and learn to go on mission, He does not leave us. He hovers over us. He wants us more dependent on Him than the nest He made for us in the first place.

When Karen and I were busy with our two sons in a stroller, their older sister was already on her back headed down the driveway’s hill on to the street. Cars and a truck were traveling in front of our house, but Emily was happily on her way. Karen said, “Bob!” I looked at Emily headed to the street, and everything went in slow motion. I ran to hover over her. She wen in between a car and a truck, hit the curb on the other side of the street, and began to soar off her bike and into a ravine! I caught her as she was flying. Do you know what she said? “Daddy, can we do that again?” God hovers over us like a parent, catching us.

Do you believe God will catch you when you are in danger? Has He not caught you before many crashes? God hovers over us like a parent eagle.

Third, He spreads out His wings to swoop down and rescue us time and time again, bearing us up on His wings. Exodus 19:4  reads: “You yourselves have seen what I did in Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself.” https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Exodus+19%3A4&version=ESV

God rescued us in Jesus Christ. God stirred up heaven’s nest. Jesus swooped down from heaven, spreading out His arms on the cross, and carried our sins away to bring us to Himself.

Just like a parent eagle, God does three things:

  1. He stirs up our nest.
  2. He hovers over us.
  3. He spreads out His wings to swoop down and catch us, bearing us up on His wings.

 

Does Your Work Answer God’s Call On Your Life?

God has a call on your life, but what is it? Why did God put you in that place and in that job? The question of God’s call is what we are to make our whole lives answer.

As the Christian martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffer pondered as he wrote from a prison cell in Germany, “Who stands fast?” Bonhoeffer asserted, “Only the responsible man, who tries to make his whole life an answer to the question and call of God.” https://www.amazon.com/Calling-Christ-Robert-Davis-Smart/dp/1512780413/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

The Christian ought to not feel secondary if they do not have a full-time Christian vocational calling, which most do not have. In fact, in scripture the bible highlights how most leaders had significant roles in God’s kingdom without serving God as priests, prophets, apostles, or pastors. They were mothers and fathers, shepherds and farmers. They were fishermen and government officials.

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ” (Colossians 3:23-24).

A leader at my church has worked his entire career at a major corporation. At a recent and helpful seminar he taught to pastors and elders at our annual General Assembly to make sure our sermons have more to do with people in the work place than pastors and missionaries. Although he has a seminary degree, he sees every work (paid or not) as sacred to God.

Bill Pence has a blog that will assist the reader in this area so that people see that every calling is sacred before God’s Face (Coram Deo). Check out his blog and resources. https://coramdeotheblog.com/tag/faith-and-work/

 

Fatherhood for Father’s Day

Fatherhood involves three things; namely, vision, life on life formation, and a story of salvation. In Deuteronomy 6:1-12, 20-21 God’s people had experienced an amazing salvation, and God emphasizes the value and importance of fatherhood.

In the Old Testament family included a wider circle of at least two generations and also servants, widows, orphans, also aliens, who were all protected under the father or patriarch’s headship. Children were named by the father and were known as his children; for example in the gospels John and James sons of Zebedee or Jesus bar Joseph.

The ideal father is God and manifested in commands concerning fatherhood, not so much in the narratives. At best, we see determined fathers like Joshua, Job, and Solomon (Proverbs 1:8), who declare that their families will serve the Lord and will listen to biblical instruction.

Since the family makes a nation and a church strong, God starts with a vision in Deuteronomy: “Fear God, you your sons, and your son’s sons that you may enjoy long days in the land and that you may multiply greatly” (6:2-3). Before having children, a man should sense a calling and a vision for children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren in the context of an experiential knowledge of God (Fear of God means just that this). In our culture we think so much about the now (secular time) that we aim and fall short of the Glory of God’s vision for our lives. Suddenly, we  find ourselves holding the little hands of our grandchildren (see photo). The time has flown bye. Fatherhood begins with vision for succeeding generations.

Second, fatherhood is life on life spiritual formation. As the word of God sets on a father’s heart, he then instructs his children “diligently” (6:7). How? By a father’s life loving on his children. When?  “When you sit in your house” and “when you walk by the way” and “when you lie down” and “when you rise” (6:7-8). Fatherhood is life on life spiritual formation or discipleship, just as Jesus called His disciples to be “with Him” (Mark 3:14). Spiritual instruction is the primary domain of the father, not the mother nor the church nor a school. It is not a classroom environment; it is a home context of life on life formation.

Thirdly, fathers must tell how they were saved by God’s mighty Hand. In fact, God tells the first Israelite fathers to make their children regularly ask the question about how papa bear and mama bear were saved. When your children ask what the meaning of all this worship and instruction is, father bear should say: “We were slaves . . . and the Lord brought us out and give us (heaven)” (6:20-21). Tell your children how the Lord showed signs and wonders in saving you from slavery to sin and Satan and idols of our culture, like money, power, and so forth. “Dad, why is our family serious about Christ in a secular culture?” Father: “We were slaves to sin and Satan, even the gods of money, work, and pleasure. But God in Christ, by the power of the Holy Spirit, delivered us out of such darkness and brought us into His marvelous light – a kingdom of light.”

Fatherhood begins with a vision, continues for eighteen years per child with life on life spiritual formation, and constantly tells the testimony of salvation to the generations to come.

The bible doesn’t give examples of human fathers that we can model off of, but only of broken fathers in need of restoration to the hearts of their children and to God. God the Father gave His only Begotten Son to redeem fatherhood and to save both the parents and their children, and children’s children.