Assemblies of God SearchSite GuideStoreContact Us

Vantage point

God our Father

An old friend called recently. I had been his pastor for several years and saw him grow in the Lord. He said something that surprised me.

“I’m learning to pray,” he told me. “I must admit that prayer was always a struggle for me. But that’s changing.”

I was glad for this, but also surprised at his confession. He was one of our most faithful members — and prayer had been one of our strongest emphases at the church. What was the problem? I wondered.

He answered before I could ask the question. “I never talked to my earthly father,” he explained. “So it was difficult for me to talk to my Heavenly Father.”

This is not an uncommon problem. Years ago this problem began to surface in the church. It has continued to grow. More and more believers struggle with it. The decaying status of the family just means this problem will continue to climb.

I can’t relate to this from my own experience. I had a great relationship with my dad, so, even when I was very young, the image of God as Father was positive and reassuring.

But for the many like my friend, it is not so easy. The church needs to stay aware of this and reinforce a solid biblical picture of the fatherhood of God.

No earthly father, no matter how good he is, could ever approach the perfection of our Heavenly Father. And no deficient father can ever remove the truth of our Heavenly Father’s great love for us.

I used to teach systematic theology. One section I taught is called Theology Proper. That’s a fancy term for the study of God the Father. It is a worthy subject, not just in Bible college, but also in our churches. We must make it clear to people that no matter how bad (or nonexistent) their relationship is to their earthly father, their Heavenly Father is far different. And we must show them how to relate to Him.

No matter what your relationship with your earthly father was or is like, your Heavenly Father wants to be close to you. Try talking to Him today.

Ken Horn

E-mail your comments to

E-mail this page to a friend.
©1999-2009 General Council of the Assemblies of God