In Christian circles we focus quite often on God being our Father. This is absolutely appropriate. Necessary, even, so we can learn how to put all of our extra baggage (both good and bad) about fathers to the side and see God for who He really is.
This passage is talking about Jesus, the Messiah, though. So that word “father” can muddy the waters a bit more, can’t it?
Remember last time we talked about the context of this passage and how Everlasting Father in the Hebrew refers to the one who brings about eternity. So lets focus there and leave our thoughts on fathers for another day.
Eternity hard to fathom, isn’t it?
I mean, it’s been an eternity since I graduated high school, or had a proper vacation, or even since my kids did what I asked them without whining first. We literally use words in twisted ways so often it’s hard to get back to their true definition.
Eternal: adjective 1. Lasting or existing forever; without end or beginning. 2. (of truths, values, or questions) valid for all time; essentially unchanging.
Okay, so maybe my kids’ whining isn’t quite as eternal as it feels. Neither is that grief, loneliness, or financial stress that may have you trapped under a weight that feels eternal.
Throughout the Bible we are reminded that the struggles we face (whether they are the wear and tear of the daily grind or the kind that make us feel like we’re suffocating) are temporal, not eternal. They are definitely here today, but friends, take heart. They will not last forever.
Take some time to read and really think about these verses. Pick out the one that speaks to you the loudest and memorize it this week. That way, no matter what trouble a day might hold, you have truth right there, just waiting to be remembered.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
Psalm 146:1-10 “Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord, my soul. I will praise the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live. Do not put your trust in princes, in human beings, who cannot save. When their spirit departs, they return to the ground; on that very day their plans come to nothing. Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord their God. He is the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them—he remains faithful forever. He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets prisoners free, the Lord gives sight to the blind, the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down, the Lord loves the righteous. The Lord watches over the foreigner and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked. The Lord reigns forever, your God, O Zion, for all generations. Praise the Lord.” (italics are mine)
1 Peter 1:6-7 “In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.”
2 Corinthians 1:9 “Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.”
Deuteronomy 33:27 “The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.”
Remember, we are not in this alone. Jesus is our Wonderful Counselor. He is ready and waiting to hear all we have to say and He’s ready to guide and direct us through the rough times. He is also our Mighty God. He doesn’t just have pretty words to say, He also has all the power necessary to move heaven and earth. He has your back and mine. For ever and ever.