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"A Father's Love," 1 Kings 19: 1-15, Santosha Landon-Tillman

A father's love can run as deep as a mother's love but it is often expressed in terms of encouragement and expectations rather than nurture. It may be voiced in loving actions rather than saying "I love you." Father God called the prophet Elijah to share the hard truth with his fellow Israelites about consequences of living idolatrous lives. Elijah went beyond God's directions, killed 450 of Baal's priests and fled to the desert when he realized his actions evoked a death sentence from Queen Jezebel. We all have life experiences where we wished we had just followed directions instead getting ourselves into what seems to be an unsolvable mess. Father God lovingly reminded Elijah that God was his provider, protector and that Elijah was not the only one who kept the faith. God showed that Elijah and there was no problem that God could not solve. Our fathers, including our spiritual fathers or father figures, have the gift of keeping us from being overwhelmed by seemingly unsolvable messes. Fathers can reassure us that those problems can be fixed and that they are there for us regardless of our messes. Fathers must set moral boundaries, bring children into knowledge God's Holy Word and set an example as Christian father who encourages his family to follow him as he follows the Lord's lifestyle examples.

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