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I belong to a fellowship that  I never wanted to join. It’s the Fellowship of the Fatherless.  I won’t be purchasing a gift, signing a card or sharing a meal with my father on Father’s Day.  He’s been with Jesus for a long time and I still miss him. Time has faded many memories and yet a legacy remains that gives me more than comfort…it gives me hope.  His love remains, and it is a reminder that my earthly father is with my heavenly Father and my Saviour has promised me a reunion one day.

The Legacy of a Godly Father

Many have written about what defines a godly father and the Bible speaks clearly with much wisdom and instruction on this. I suggest that what makes a man a good and godly father is the same thing that makes a woman a good and godly mother, a daughter a good and godly daughter, a son a good and godly son, a friend a good and godly friend…you get the idea.  

Pastor and Bible teacher Woodrow Kroll is well known for these words:

Have a good and godly day. For of what lasting value is a good day, if it is not also a godly day?

I borrow on his thoughts and paraphrase that to suggest:

Be a good and godly father [or mother, daughter, son, etc]. For of what lasting value is being a good father if one is not also a godly father?

This article will be short and sweet.  It’s about the lasting value that our lives leave when we depart this world.  When one becomes a member of the Fellowship of the Fatherless, or the Fellowship of the Motherless, or any other such group.  People are bonded together by the loss of a loved one, but what remains is individual, personal, and hopefully precious.

***Watch the inspiring video at the end of this article***

There are 5 points of importance in the video that follows.  While the video is intended to honor fathers on Father’s Day, the lessons apply to all of us.

This article is also not only about fathers.  What applies to being godly fathers also applies to being godly mothers, daughters, sons, friends, employees, etc.  Living a godly life does not start with a “to do” list.  Godly living is not sustained by duty.  Rather, godliness is generated and sustained by devotion. We are fallen creatures and we will always fail in duty-driving living. What God wants is that our lives be fueled by devotion and dependence on Him.  That’s godly living.

Godly living starts with a heart devoted to the Lord, a focus on Jesus, and a daily surrender to His will and ways.  When we live that way, our souls will be filled, and our minds directed, by His Holy Spirit. 

Jesus’ Prescription for Godly Living

Matthew 22:37-40  “…You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

Only by loving God first can we love others with a selflessness that reflects Jesus’ unconditional love for us.  When Jesus said, “On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets,” He was giving godly direction for our works and our hopes.  

Our works are defined by the Law of God, and our works should always be fueled by love for Jesus. Then we will know and trust that His Spirit will direct and guide us in all we do.  

Our true hope has been given to us through the promises of God as prophesied through the Prophets and many of which are already fulfilled.  When we abide in Jesus’ love and find rest in Him, we can know and trust that He is faithful to give us all that He has promised.  What a great hope that is.  It’s a hope of strength and joy in this life and an even greater hop in the glory to come.  The Lord’s promises are many and our hope is anchored in Him.

Fellowship of the Fatherless?

So what does all this have to do with the Fellowship of the Fatherless?  If people live long enough, they will need to say goodbye to their father (mother too)   What defines the members in this “group” is loss, but what surpasses the sorrow is love.  Memories of loved ones will fade with time, but their love abides forever.  

Living a good and godly life really is all about love…loving God and loving our neighbors.  And it really is that which has lasting value.  That’s why the apostle James defined the commandment to love as The Royal Law. 

The Royal Law

James 2:8  If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

This law is the Law of our King, the One whom we live to love and love to serve. It is the identification of a true disciple according to Jesus (John 13:35), and it is the law of Christ that Paul wrote about (Gal 6:2).

When our lives are fueled by God’s love for us, and when we pour out the love we receive to others, we are building the legacy of love that we all hope to leave for our loved ones.

Happy Father’s Day from Reasons for Hope* Jesus

If your father isn’t with you on this Father’s Day, remember that God is your Father, a father to the Fatherless (Ps 68:5), and you are never alone (Heb 13:5).

Take a minute now and watch this video.  It’s meant for fathers but it presents 5 truths, 5 key points about love, that hold true for all.  Live your life, not focused on your works, but on loving your Lord.  Let Him work in and through you with His love that enables you to live a godly life and leave a true and faithful legacy of love.

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