Here are notes to follow along with the sermon and future reference.
Do not forget to honor any great-grandfathers, grand-fathers and fathers today!
Some roles of dads are changing and it is not for the worse.
One article I read said that:
“In 1965, the average father spent 16 minutes a day with their children. They spent more time hard-boiling eggs. The good news, however, is that that number had tripled by 2016.”
“A 2015 Pew Research Center survey found that 57 percent of fathers said that being a parent was central to their identity, compared to 58 percent of mothers. Of that group, 54 percent of men reported that parenting is rewarding all of the time.”
“A recent consumer study found that millennial dads, in general, do much more of the shopping than their predecessors, and are much more tech- and consumer-savvy than before.”
So, for you care-takers and shopping dads – thank you!
There is certainly beauty and power in fatherhood. Why? Because it comes from God and he is beautiful and powerful.
Which is why fatherhood when handled incorrectly can also wound.
Healing is available at any level physical, intellectual and emotional and the Holy Spirit is concerned about all healing.
Matthew 6:9-15 The Lord’s Prayer, aka Our Father
Prayer is simply having a conversation with God. When you have a conversation, sometimes you are the one talking and at other times you are the one listening. Praying to God is like that. Sometimes you are the one talking and at other times you are the one listening.
Jesus gives us a model, a framework, to help us learn to pray.
How does it begin?
Think of all the names and titles that Jesus could have begun: Creator, Almighty, Lord of Heaven and Earth, the Holy One. God wants us to address him as Father when we come to him in prayer, when we come to have conversation with Him.
It matters how we approach God and God wants us to come to him as a father. This should communicate the vast importance God places on fatherhood.
It is of amazing and great honor from God that, dads, we are fathers. Not because we are all that. In fact, all of us are aware of how far we fall short in our fatherhood, which God knew, but yet, he still gives us the honor of being called fathers.
In Matthew’s gospel, there is a special focus and we see that by how Jesus follows-up the prayer. It is the other f-word besides Father: forgiveness (vs 14-15).
Jesus adds a very clear condition: If we forgive others, then our Father will forgive us, but if we do not forgive others, then neither will our Father forgive us.
So, what does that indicate about forgiveness?
It is important and on God’s heart that we forgive. Extending forgiveness is a central part of living in the kingdom, because for those in Christ we have been forgiven of an unpayable debt.
Questions for Reflection in the Spirit
What memories come up in your mind and heart on Father’s Day?
Does regret or shame rise up?
Or bitterness and resolve to never think of your dad?
Did you know we were designed to forgive?
There are multiple academic published studies that show people who are more forgiving to others show signs of better physical and psychological health.
One study found those who are more forgiving have lower blood pressure.
Better health in relation to forgiveness shows that we were made to forgive.
When we forgive, we release the other person of any offense, mistake, hurt, or wound they may have caused us.
When we do not forgive, that hurt turns into bitterness and anger, and we are seeing a lot of that in our country today.
Time for Soul Care
Our heavenly Father wants to touch us with his love this Father’s Day. Even if you are not a follower of Jesus, you are welcome in this place and God has something wonderful and loving for you. He longs for you to come to him and be welcomed into his loving arms through Jesus.
If you are a dad and you have regrets from past mistakes to which you carry with you today, then today Jesus invites you to take on his yoke of freedom and forgiveness. Jesus has paid your debt, receive His forgiveness and forgive yourself.
If there are hurts and pains that you received from your dad, whether he was present or absent, God is calling you to forgive him, to release him of his past mistakes. Place your trust in God that He is able to give you the strength to release your father of any wounds he may have given you.
God bless you on this Father's Day!
References  https://www.fatherly.com/love-money/history-of-fatherhood/ Accessed 6/18/2020.  Ibid.  Ibid.  Berry, Worthington, O’Connor, Parrott, & Wade, 2005; Brown, 2003; Lawler et al., 2003, 2005; Toussaint, Williams, Musick, & Everson, 2001; Witvliet, Ludwig, & Vander Laan, 2001. Contact Pastor Matt if you would like more details on these articles.  American Psychologist Feb-Mar 2012