Observing Father’s Day. What did God have to say to this father?

I’m sure God still speaks, and He had something to say to my husband on Father’s Day.

His Plan

My husband Joel’s idea of a perfect day is to go fishing. So when Father’s Day was approaching, he decided that was exactly what he wanted to do. We drove up the Florida coastline on Friday night after work and arrived at our destination just before sundown. The next morning Joel was up early getting bait and rigging his kayak for the day. He disappeared from view within minutes after launching his boat and I didn’t see him again until sundown.

His Day, His Way

Two days later, I was the one up earliest. I headed for the kitchen first thing and flipped the coffeemaker on. Once brewed, I poured myself a cup and sat down with my Bible and journal and began to write: “Good morning and Happy Father’s Day, dear Abba-Father…”

Who’s Day Is It Really?

A while later as I was finishing my quiet time, Joel walked out. “Good morning!”

“Good morning!” I responded. “How’d you sleep?”

“Not bad. Are you going to church?” Being away from home, he wasn’t sure what the plan was.

I said, “I’ve been thinking about trying that little Community Church up the street.”

Joel announced, “I’m not going to church.”

“Oh. Okay. Hey, it’s funny you’re saying that. Do you remember how Bryan recently told us that statistically church attendance on Father’s Day is one of the lowest turnouts of the year? I guess you’re proving his statistic.”

Joel sat down with his cup of coffee and Bible as I got up to get my second cup. Suddenly he announced, “Alright, I’m going to church.”

Puzzled, I asked, “Why now?”

Looking at his Bible almost in disbelief he said, “My next scripture.” I read Jeremiah 16 yesterday, so today the very next scripture in Jeremiah 17 is titled, ‘Observing the Sabbath’. “

I burst out laughing, “Well alright!”

“It’s not alright.” He snapped back, half amused and half annoyed.

Snickering I said, “That’s my Daddy! I guess I won’t have to go to church alone.”

Listeners of the Bible

God spoke to Moses from a burning bush. In 1 Kings 19, God’s spoke in a gentle whisper to Elijah. Ezekiel heard God’s voice as loud as the roar of rushing water. And just before Jesus’ birth, an angel of the Lord spoke to Joseph in a dream. Hearing can happen during fiery circumstances of life or when peacefully sleeping. God’s voice may come like an urgent boom while other times it’s barely audible. His counsel is evident both in the Old and New Testament. Each of these listeners was confident they were hearing God. They listened and believed.

Ears in Training

“But I don’t hear God,” some might say. Jesus assures us in John’s Gospel that Christians do hear Him. “My sheep hear my voice…” (John 10:27). He says He calls us by name. His flock recognize the voice of The Shepherd and follow. Many believers start off like Samuel does in 1 Samuel 3, not recognizing God’s voice. Listening takes practice. Learning to hear God is encouraged when we witness it modeled. It gives us confidence. Elizabeth reassures Mary this way in Luke 1:45. “Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished.” Elizabeth’s support can inspire us to do this for one another today! Reading God’s Word daily, documenting it, and sharing what we hear in a safe, small Yada group is vital. Together we’re training ourselves to listen and believe.

The Invitation

It was exciting to witness God inviting Joel to His house on Father’s Day. God still speaks, and sometimes He’s pretty darn funny. Hebrews 4:12 teaches us that God’s Word is alive, active, and breathing. So, hearing sometimes is simply a matter of agreeing with what God has already said.

Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. (Matthew 7:24-25)

Shepherd’s Voice

Do you expectantly listen for The Shepherd’s voice? Hearing Him is as close as opening your Bible.