“For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. Therefore I urge you, imitate me” (1 Cor. 4:15-16 NKJV).
In this passage of Scripture the apostle Paul speaks to the church in Corinth. He explains that many offer to instruct them but have no paternal feeling for them. Paul was God’s chosen vessel, used as the instrument of conversion by preaching the good news. He was their spiritual father.
Like a father watches over his newborn baby, Paul watched over and nurtured the fledgling faith of those new believers. He put in long days and sleepless nights delighting in their desire for the sincere milk of the word. Paul, ever the proud papa, encouraged and tended to their growth in God. Leaving a lifestyle of idolatry, Paul taught them to walk in their new life in Christ.
As wives of pastors, and those who co-pastor, we witness the fatherly affection that develops between a faithful minister and those he begets through the gospel. There is always a special pride and joy in watching ones children follow in their footsteps of faith. Thus Paul says, “Imitate me.” Follow my example. Learn the gospel by watching my life.
This Father’s Day I’m praying for my pastor/husband and yours. It’s been said that the greatest gift a father can give his children is to love and respect their mother. Therefore I pray that our marriages would be/become reflections of the love relationship that God has with the church, the bride of Christ.
May our husbands be the fathers that the apostle Paul taught about, men who love their spiritual children with the unconditional love that comes from the heart of God the Father.
May they never be careless about the calling upon their lives and become spiritual deadbeat dads. On the contrary may they be men of integrity who see and tend to the needs of their spiritual children.
May they be priests and prophets of their spiritual household—men who speak to God about their children, and men who speak to their children about God.
May they be men who delight in the Father, and men in whom the Father delights.
I pray that they are men who worship, love, and serve God with reckless abandon, who walk so closely to the Father that they can say without a hint of hypocrisy, “Imitate me.”
This is my Father’s Day prayer.