Are You My Father?

Emma VanDeVelde
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The Grandfather Effect is a gripping new storytelling podcast from Moody Radio’s Brian Dahlen. The podcast follows Dahlen’s family and their rocky road from relational brokenness to reconciliation. The seven-episode series takes you on an emotional journey into their secrets, faith, sins, and attempts at forgiveness. You can listen here.

Have you ever been to a family reunion? If you have, you probably know that family reunions vary widely, depending on the family. For some, the experience is an annual trip with matching t-shirts, tropical destinations, and exchanging stories from the last trip around the sun. For others, it feels more like a sporadic obligation with half-eaten casseroles, forced conversations, and a general disposition of foreignness.

You may even wonder, “If this is my family, why do they feel like strangers?”

The concept of a family reunion would have been strange to the people of Jesus’ day. In order to have a “re-union” an implicit “de-union” or “un-union” would have taken place in a family…a time where each member of the family went their separate ways. And since family, name, status, and origin determined almost every element of life during this time—the thought of separating from this identity did not exist. Families didn’t tend to have reunions because they didn’t tend to separate in quite the same ways we do today.

The Family of God

In the most recent episode of The Grandfather Effect a reunion takes place. If you listened, you can probably hear some elements of foreignness between Brian and his family. They’re all very open and friendly, sure, but how do “friendly” and “family” interact with one another under the circumstances detailed in the podcast? How does one “re-union” after years of existing apart?

Perhaps this is why the message of the gospel of Jesus is so different? Scripture is laced with messaging surrounding heavenly family. We are called sons and daughters of the most High God, Jesus addresses his friends as brothers, and we are adoptedinto the spiritual family. This good news guides us in how to honor our fathers and mothers and respect our husbands and love our wives as well as how to care for the widow and the advocate for the orphan. All of this familial imagery presents a beautiful picture how to obey the Heavenly calling we have as followers of Jesus.

As you listen to the episode, reflect and pray over the following questions…

  1. What does family interaction look and feel like in my family?
  2. Are there familial relationships that I can point more boldly towards Christ?
  3. How can I be a better son/daughter, husband/wife, sister/brother according to scripture?
For Further Reading:

Like Our Father

by Christina Fox

Reveal God to your children by parenting them like He parents us. Tired of all the parenting books full of strategic checklists, how-to advice,...

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