To kick off the year I am starting with a 5-day devotional titled “Dad Tired and Loving It” through the Bible.com site.
Day 1 – Am I Doing Enough as a Dad?
Today’s devotional is connected to Ephesians 2 from God’s Word:
‘And you [He made alive when you] were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of your transgressions and sins, in which you once walked. You were following the ways of this world [influenced by this present age], in accordance with the prince of the power of the air (Satan), the spirit who is now at work in the disobedient [the unbelieving, who fight against the purposes of God]. Among these [unbelievers] we all once lived in the passions of our flesh [our behavior governed by the sinful self], indulging the desires of human nature [without the Holy Spirit] and [the impulses] of the [sinful] mind. We were, by nature, children [under the sentence] of [God’s] wrath, just like the rest [of mankind]. But God, being [so very] rich in mercy, because of His great and wonderful love with which He loved us, even when we were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of our sins, He made us [spiritually] alive together with Christ (for by His grace—His undeserved favor and mercy—you have been saved from God’s judgment). And He raised us up together with Him [when we believed], and seated us with Him in the heavenly places, [because we are] in Christ Jesus, [and He did this] so that in the ages to come He might [clearly] show the immeasurable and unsurpassed riches of His grace in [His] kindness toward us in Christ Jesus [by providing for our redemption]. For it is by grace [God’s remarkable compassion and favor drawing you to Christ] that you have been saved [actually delivered from judgment and given eternal life] through faith. And this [salvation] is not of yourselves [not through your own effort], but it is the [undeserved, gracious] gift of God; not as a result of [your] works [nor your attempts to keep the Law], so that no one will [be able to] boast or take credit in any way [for his salvation]. For we are His workmanship [His own master work, a work of art], created in Christ Jesus [reborn from above—spiritually transformed, renewed, ready to be used] for good works, which God prepared [for us] beforehand [taking paths which He set], so that we would walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us].
Therefore, remember that at one time you Gentiles by birth, who are called “Uncircumcision” by those who called themselves “Circumcision,” [itself a mere mark] which is made in the flesh by human hands— remember that at that time you were separated from Christ [excluded from any relationship with Him], alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise [with no share in the sacred Messianic promise and without knowledge of God’s agreements], having no hope [in His promise] and [living] in the world without God. But now [at this very moment] in Christ Jesus you who once were [so very] far away [from God] have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our peace and our bond of unity. He who made both groups —[Jews and Gentiles]— into one body and broke down the barrier, the dividing wall [of spiritual antagonism between us], by abolishing in His [own crucified] flesh the hostility caused by the Law with its commandments contained in ordinances [which He satisfied]; so that in Himself He might make the two into one new man, thereby establishing peace. And [that He] might reconcile them both [Jew and Gentile, united] in one body to God through the cross, thereby putting to death the hostility. And He came and preached the good news of peace to you [Gentiles] who were far away, and peace to those [Jews] who were near. For it is through Him that we both have a [direct] way of approach in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and aliens [outsiders without rights of citizenship], but you are fellow citizens with the saints (God’s people), and are [members] of God’s household, having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself as the [chief] Cornerstone, in whom the whole structure is joined together, and it continues [to increase] growing into a holy temple in the Lord [a sanctuary dedicated, set apart, and sacred to the presence of the Lord]. In Him [and in fellowship with one another] you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.’Ephesians 2:1-22
The theme of today’s reading is being made alive in Christ! How many of us try to go through our life, our day, each hour in our own strength? How many of us aren’t willing to ask for help? Imagine how life would be and could be different if we would just invite Jesus into the situation and allow our lives to be transformed and glorified our God. Imagine if we went to God’s Word as our source of truth in order to get His wisdom and direction to help us live out our lives according to His plans and purposes. Imagine if we went to God’s Word to lead and guide us through each and every situation that comes our way. Imagine if we invited Jesus into our hearts to allow the Holy Spirit to be with us every moment of every day in order to never be alone and never have to try and figure everything out on our own. Let’s look to our Heavenly Father for wisdom and discernment about how to be the dads He has created us to be.
Let’s lead with love! Let’s lead with grace! Let’s lead with kindness!
Let’s lead with love before God first loved us! Let’s lead with unconditional love as God loves us! It’s not about the works that make us love them, let’s just choose to love! We love because Christ first loved us! We are God’s workmanship, His handiwork, His masterpiece, His work of art! We were created to do His good works! So today let’s be the dads God created us to be so that our wives, our kids, our neighbors, and our world will know how great our God is! Let’s be the dads and be ready to do the good works God created in advance for us to do!
Let’s choose to live our lives differently from the world’s expectations. Let’s choose to live our lives God’s way. Let’s choose to live our lives in a way that will bring God the praise, the honor, and the glory in Jesus’s name. Let’s choose to walk out today close to God! Let’s choose to walk out our today in a way that brings unity and peace! Let’s choose to walk out today with God in order to bring forgiveness, reconciliation, peace, and love into every situation. Let’s choose not to go it alone but to walk out today with God! Let’s build our lives as dads from the cornerstone that is Jesus! Let’s build our lives as dads on the foundation that is Jesus! Let’s live out our lives as dads who are filled with the Holy Spirit!
Today’s devotional has the purpose of providing a reading plan to encourage Dads in the hope of the gospel. Today’s devotional has been provided by Harvest House Publishers (more details).
Reading through today’s devotional, here are some takeaways for me: (check out the devotional on your own too to see if you pick up other nuggets, and please share your findings in the comments)
- What are the memories of your dad growing up?
- Were there things you wished he would have or could have provided you?
- Was your dad present? Was your dad abscent?
- How has your experience with your dad impacted how you have decided to live your life?
- Are you mirroring what he did for you and with you?
- Are you adjusting what he did for you and with you?
- Are you rejecting what he did for you and with you?
- Are you blazzing your own trail?
- What would you change about how you will be a dad?
- What would you keep the same about being a dad?
- Are you being more present?
- Are you being more loving?
- Are you being more …?
- Are you being less …?
- Are you looking to be the best dad you can be? No matter how good or bad your dad may have been?
- Are you a dad today?
- Are you living up to being the dad you hoped you would be and could be?
- Are there things getting in the way of you being a good dad or better dad?
- Are you allowing worry and fear to keep you from being or becoming the dad God created you to be?
- Are you being robbed from being the dad God created you to be by being impatient?
- Are you being robbed from being the dad God created you to be by being too busy?
- Are you being robbed from being the dad God created you to be by being distracted by work?
- Are you leaning on God or are you allowing the devil to rob you of your joy by making you feel like a failure?
- Are you looking to live your life where you want your kids to love Jesus?
- Today’s devotional Dad Tired points out that we shouldn’t be worrying or fearful that we will fail at this.
- Today’s devotional points out “the fact that God placed your children in a home with a father who wants his kids to fall in love with Jesus is evidence that God is already pursuing their little hearts. You can rest in knowing that God doesn’t need you to save your kids, but instead invites you into the process. “
- Today’s devotional also shares “God is chasing after them. Because you are reading this devotion right at this moment is proof of that. He is chasing after your heart so that they can have a dad who is more in love with Him.“
- Today’s devotional also shares “God wants your kids to know Him even more than you do. He wants their hearts so much that He gave them a daddy who desires to know God more.“
- Today’s devotional gives us an action item or task:
Today may be the first time you read something from the Bible. Today might be the first time you are hearing about our Heavenly Father. Today might be the first time you are hearing about Jesus how made a way for us. If you haven’t met Jesus before but would like to start then join me in praying the following prayer today and let’s start this journey together. Leave me a comment and I can reach out and pray with you and for you.
Freel free to copy out the image and sign your name and keep it as a keepsake too. Feel free to reach out and let me know too at email@example.com.