June 15, 2014 • After worship service at Trinity Covenant Reformed Church and Pasig Covenant Reformed Church
The Word of the LORD Concerning Our Heavenly Father’s Love for His Children:
Psalm 68:4-5: Sing to God, sing praises to his name; lift up a song to him who rides through the deserts; his name is the LORD; exult before him! Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation.
Isaiah 64:8: But now, O LORD, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand.
John 4:23: But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.
John 1:12: But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.
Galatians 4:4-7: But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.
The Word of the Lord Concerning the Duties of Our Earthly Fathers to Their Children:
All fathers, men, and boys are invited to come to the front of the sanctuary to be honored and to receive a blessing through prayer.
Adopted from 1 Timothy 3:1-7: The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to be a [father], he desires a noble task. Therefore a [father] must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he [help in building up] God’s church? … Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.
Ephesians 6:4: Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
Hebrews 12:9: Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live?
A Father’s Day Responsive Prayer:
Adopted from the St. John’s Episcopal Church website and “Worship Helps” blog
Blessed are you Lord our God in heaven, Creator and Redeemer of all. You are our Father from all eternity, giving life and love to all your good creation. In you alone “we live and move and have our being.” You also have revealed yourself to us as our Father, and all of us are your children. You have given us our earthly fathers, and in them you give us a glimpse of your everlasting love.
People: We give thanks for those fathers who strive to balance work, marriage, and children and church life.
We pray for fathers who live away from their wives and children, because of military service or other work location.
People: Grant them faith, hope and joy in the midst of necessary separation.
We give thanks for those fathers who have adopted children or who have stepchildren, just as our heavenly Father has adopted us as his own children in Christ.
People: Grant them joy and gratitude for the gift you have provided, and fairness in loving all their children.
We pray for fathers who gave up their children for adoption.
People: Grant them peace and comfort as they trust in your providence.
We pray for fathers who face the demands of single parenthood.
People: Grant them strength, wisdom and sufficient livelihood.
We pray for those men who have “fathered” us as mentors and guides.
People: Grant them patience and love as they teach and nurture others.
We pray for those men who desire to be fathers.
People: Grant them grace to accept your timing and will.
We ask your blessings on those men who are about to become fathers.
People: Grant them joy, rest and peace as they trust you for the future.
We pray for older fathers who continue to love and support their children now grown-ups.
People: Grant them joy and satisfaction for a job well done.
We ask your special blessing on those fathers who have lost a child to death.
People: Grant them comfort in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
And we continue to pray for those who miss their fathers who are now with the Lord.
People: May their loving memories continue to live in them and nurture them. Grant them comfort in the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Our Father in heaven, we thank you for the gift of fatherhood. We thank you for the many examples of faithful fathers in Scripture, like Abraham, Joshua, and Cornelius. They are also sinners, but we are mindful this day of all these men who have inspired us by their faithfulness to you, and especially Joseph the earthly father of Jesus, who raised his “adopted” son.
May these fathers gathered here today emulate these examples of faith; may they model for all the rest of us what it means to be your disciple. Bless them and their families and households. May the love of our earthly fathers draw us ever nearer to you our heavenly Father, as you mold us into the image of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Giving of Tokens of Gratitude to the Fathers
The children or wives give tokens of appreciation to their fathers.