I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. Ephesians 3:14–15
The garage of my childhood home holds many memories. On Saturday mornings, my dad would roll our car down the driveway so we had room to work—with my favorite project being a broken go-kart we’d found. On that garage floor, we gave it new wheels, attached a sporty, plastic windshield, and—with Dad on the street looking out for traffic—I would race down the driveway with such excitement! Looking back, I see more was going on in that garage than simply fixing go-karts. Instead, a young boy was being shaped by his dad—and getting a glimpse of God in the process.
Human beings have been patterned on God’s own nature (Genesis 1:27–28). Human parenting has its origin in Him too, for He’s “the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name” (Ephesians 3:14–15). Just as parents imitate God’s life-giving abilities by bringing children into the world, when they nurture and protect their kids, they express qualities not sourced in themselves but in Father God. He’s the model all parenting is based on.
My father wasn’t perfect. Like every father and mother, his parenting sometimes failed to imitate heaven’s. But when it so often did imitate God, it gave me a glimpse of His own nurture and protection—right there, as we fixed go-karts on the garage floor.
How do you see good parenting reflecting God’s nature? How can you reflect His nurture and protection to others today?
Father God, help me nurture and protect our children and others today, revealing Your good qualities to them.
At the end of his second missionary journey, Paul made a brief visit to Ephesus (Acts 18:19–22) and returned there at the start of his third missionary journey (19:1–21; 20:31). When he was imprisoned (see Ephesians 3:1), probably in Rome, he wrote the letter of Ephesians to encourage the believers to remain strong, telling them that he had persistently prayed for their growth and maturity (1:15–18).
The book of Ephesians contains two prayers. In the first one, which emphasizes knowledge (1:15–23), Paul prays that the church would have “the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that [they] may know [God] better,” and “know the hope” to which God had called them (vv. 17–18). In the second prayer, which focuses on love, he prays that “being rooted and established in love” (3:17), they might “grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ” (v. 18).