I've known some friends who when they pray, they call God "Daddy or dad".
I think they're weird.
God as King I get.
God as Creator I can get behind.
God as Savior, spot on.
God the Master makes sense.
Even God as a universal Father, I can endorse.
But my dad? That's weird.
There's probably a couple reasons...
First, maybe a bit of a disconnect with my dad. My dad was a good dad. But just like every other dad, he had imperfections. He was flawed. And there were some things that disappointed me.
So to make the leap from my dad to God as my dad has some ground to cover.
Maybe you can relate. All the hope that your dad would provide security and safety and comfort and love and complete attentiveness and protection and nurture and joy and satisfaction and etc. etc. etc. And the reality is that your dad didn't meet all those expectations all the time.
And in some cases, not only did he fail to provide perfect safety, but he actively did the opposite, causing harm and pain. And to leap to understanding God as dad is further than you could ever jump.
Second, I feel like the personal, intimate reference to God as my dad is sacrilegious and takes away from the Divine sovereignty of God.
The king of kings, lord of lords, God of nations, God of angelic armies, God my shield, Author and Perfector, Alpha and Omega...and daddy?
I've been walking through the gospel of Luke and my heart is changing.
Jesus' first words in Luke (which we presume are an important message from the author)?
"Didn't you know I had to be in MY FATHER'S house?"
A 12 year old boy making a declarative statement to Mary and Joseph about his unique positioning as the son of God. THE father would have been acceptable. OUR father, indicating a universal parent could have been received. But Jesus says "MY FATHER". He is making it clear from the outset that this IS intimate and this IS personal.
In fact, 18 times in Luke alone, Jesus refers to God as Father, far and away more than any other name or reference.
And when Jesus begins his public ministry? What happens? He is baptized and hasn't done anything and the heavens open, and the voice of God says, "This is my son, whom I love, with whom I am well pleased."
Sonship. Prior to any act of obedience. Prior to any ministry accomplished. God the Father says "Look at my son. Isn't he great?"
And something is stirring in me.
What if rejecting God as my dad is rejecting the essence of the Gospel?
What if God is whispering that my desire for my dad to be safety and security and protection and joy and comfort and love and satisfaction is not a bad desire...it's just misplaced. Of course my dad couldn't live up to that standard. Nor will I live up to that for Chaia. I will crumble under the weight of such lofty expectations. But what if God wants me to know that I can indeed find security and safety and protection and joy and comfort and love and satisfaction IN HIM?
Chaia can be a frustrating kid...defiant...pesky...just like any three year old. But she is my kid. And the fondness I have for her in my heart is deeper than her disobedience. My love and affection for her go further than my frustration.
She's my kid. And I am proud of her. I am pleased with her. I delight in her. I genuinely enjoy her. (Sometimes despite her!)
And lately it's as if God is saying...
Maybe, God as my dad isn't so weird after all.