“Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but raise them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” Eph. 6:4
The immediate implication of this passage is simply – God does not interact with us, so as to exasperate us. So we in suit should treat our sons and daughters in like fashion. And what a sweet and encouraging thing that is to consider well.
How does God parent us Dads?
He does not pick at us.
He does not denigrate us.
He does not ignore us.
He does not discourage us.
He does not discipline harshly, rashly or out of anger – but only when it can do us the most good. More like a coach wanting to give their charge the best advantage of their wisdom and skill for their mastery.
He encourages us.
He is patient with us.
He accepts us in our failing.
He makes it known He will never withdraw His love from us.
He is easy to please.
He delights in us.
He is approachable with the stain of sin fresh upon our hands.
He bids us come to Him even when we fear or are faithless.
It makes me weep to think of how He has dealt with me like this over the years. In times of great failure and rebellion. Oh what a Father He is. And how often I failed to be a father in like kind. May we repent, and look to His Spirit to be more and more like this each day – to the praise of His glory, and the eternal blessing of our children in Him.