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Gregory Dickow - Father, Father Me

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    Gregory Dickow - Father, Father Me
TOPICS: Father's Day, Fatherhood

Well, I believe today is a very special day where we can get to know God better as our father. God is all about family. And it's not just necessarily your family, your immediate family, because there's a lot of brokenness in many of our immediate families. But God is all about family between you and Him. Between us and him. And today, I want to believe for a real breakthrough in a revelation of the father's love and a revelation of knowing God as father. Today, we're going to define ourselves radically as one beloved by the Father. We're going to define ourselves. Define. We're not going to let this world define us. We're not going to let our pain define us. We're not going to let the community or culture around us to define us. We're going to define ourselves. Define yourself today radically as one beloved by the father. God's love for you.

And his choice of you constitute your worth. You have value. That's why God chose you. You have value. You have worth. You just haven't realized how much worth you have. Once you accept that you and I mean this radical acceptance, this radical belief and definition of yourself, that you are God's beloved child, you are the father's beloved. You are the beloved of the Father. Let this become the most important thing in your life. I love what Paul says in first Thessalonians about God as a father and about how the father of God should shape our lives. He says, You know how we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children, encouraging, comforting, and urging you to live lives worthy of God. Who calls you into his glory and his glorious kingdom. You know, I really love this verse that it gives us a little pattern here, that the way a father deals with his children is encouraging them, comforting them, and urging them to live a life worthy of the God and the father who calls them.

Today, you're going to be encouraged. Today you're going to be comforted today. You're going to be urged and inspired to know God better and to know yourself better as a result. I love what Jesus says in John Chapter ten, verse 29 My sheep hear my voice in verse 28, and then he says, My father, who has given them to me, given us to him. We're the sheep of his pasture. My father, who has given them to me, he's greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of my father's hands. The message Bible says there the father who put them under my care. Is so much greater than the destroyer and the thief. No one could ever get them away from him. Wow once the father has you, once you have put your hands, put your life in the hands of the father, no one can get you away from him.

I think the the problem that we experience in life is we don't believe that we're in his hands fully. We don't believe that he's fully in love with us. We don't believe that we're special to him. We have apprehension about going to God because we're insecure or that's what the word insecure means. It means with apprehension. You're just not sure God wants to heal you. The father wants to heal us from insecurity. The word insecure. It means to be full of care, to be secure is defined as being without care, without anxiety. When you know your life is in the hands of the father, you're secure. Without anxiety. Where there's anxiety and insecurity, it's because you're trying to care for yourself in a way that you're not trusting God. We're not fully trusting God, that he is caring for us. We should care for ourselves, don't get me wrong. But is being care free about what other people think about us.

It's about being carefree in the matters that we can't control and trusting God that He's in control of those things. That's what it is to be secure, to be confident that the father's got you because he's accepted you. You have worth to him. To be insecure means to be without a root, without a cure. We talked about roots last week and here on Father's Day, we have an opportunity to talk about the greatest root of all is that we're rooted in the love of the father. To be without a root means, to be without sufficient grounds for having confidence in life. The boy. There's a cocky confidence that this world tries to portray and offer. But there's a humble confidence that God offers. There's a humble confidence that comes from knowing that you are in the father's hands and your father is greater than all you see insecurity that we need to be healed from.

This is what makes people jealous, what makes people angry, what makes people dislike themselves. They feel insecure they start comparing themselves to others. All of that is rooted in insecurity. And it starts with this this sense of a gap between God and ourselves. Jesus. The Bible describes Jesus. One of his great descriptions is He ever lives to make intercession for us. In other words, he is constantly standing in the gap between us and the father, thinking that when we think there's a gap between us and God, we think there's a separation between us and God. Jesus is the bridge that puts an end to that separation and puts an end to that gap. The gap is what causes insecurity. Knowing that Jesus fills that gap delivers you from insecurity. Insecurity is caused from several real things in life.

Let me go through them and show you how to be healed from this and be set free from this and become secure in the father. Insecurity, number one, comes from the persistent sense of being rejected or abandoned, unaccepted or rejected or abandoned. We all grow up with some form of rejection from people, from friends, from schoolmates, classmates, maybe rejected, from our family, our parents. Maybe we seem different, the oddball. But insecurity comes from this sense of feeling unaccepted or rejected. But here's the solution for that particular root because we're going to uproot these five major roots of insecurity, the first one being the sense of rejection. How do we uproot that bad root?

In Ephesians chapter 1:6 tells us that in the new excuse me, in the King James Bible it says you are accepted in the beloved, you are accepted in the beloved, you're accepted by God and you are his beloved. Only the dignity of Sonship, knowing that you're a son or daughter of God can deliver you from the shame and the insecurity of rejection or abandonment. A lot of people I know that feel that rejection that have are living from that place of abandonment, constantly trying to fill that emptiness only God can fill. We're going to pray at the end and we're going to believe for all those gaps to be filled, all of these roots to be uprooted and all the right roots to be planted.

Psalm 27, verse ten says, When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me. When they forsake me, He will take me. I like the new living translation of that verse. Even if my father and mother abandoned me, the Lord will hold me close. Don't you love that? Even if my father and mother abandoned me, the Lord will hold me close. It's time for us to be held close to God. The Message translation. I love that one as well. My father and mother walked out and left me, but God took me in.

See, this is how we get healed from that abandonment, that insecurity. Maybe your parents were great. Maybe you didn't. This isn't where your insecurity comes from. But we're not done. We'll get to the other roots, too, because one way or another, these apply to all of us, and we can all be healed from it. But the passion translation says my father and my mother abandoned me. But you, Yahweh, took me in and made me yours. You took me in and made me yours. Wow. So the insecurity that comes from abandonment and rejection, I just uproot that from your life right now. In the name of Jesus. I speak to that root. Jesus said, "If we speak to the root, if we speak to this tree, be uprooted, implanted into the sea, it will obey us". We speak to that tree of insecurity from the root of abandonment and rejection be uprooted and cast into the sea. In Jesus name, Amen. Second place that insecurity comes from.

The second root is broken homes, abuse and relationship scars, but just broken homes and abuse in broken homes. What is the where does this exist in so many homes? 50% of children, statistics show, will grow up with a fatherless in a fatherless home at one point or another in their lives. Fatherless children are up to five times more likely to drop out of school. Fatherless children, 90% of of homeless come from fatherless homes. 75% of people in drug abuse centers come from fatherless homes. 90% of runaway teens grew up in fatherless homes. Over 70% of teen pregnancies are from fatherless homes, 75%. Over 75% of teen suicides are from fatherless homes. 85% of men in prison come from fatherless homes.

And the list goes on and on. But this is a deep root in people's lives, this broken home and the abuse, emotional, verbal, physical, sexual. We're going to uproot this now, right in the name of Jesus, we speak to this tree. Remember, Jesus said, if we can speak to this tree, be uprooted and cast in the sea. So this tree of insecurity in your life that came from abuse or broken home, we speak to that tree and we say, be uprooted, insecurity be uprooted and cast into the sea. In Jesus name, Amen. You say, Well, I still got these other roots. We're getting to them.

Third is a poor body image. A poor body image. The result is a sense of shame when we see ourselves some. Some of you could be. You could be having a beautiful. You could be looking at a beautiful body, but you don't see it beautiful. Others, you're looking at something you're ashamed of because it's not in the best shape that it can be. But you need to approve of your body so that you can improve your body. Don't improve it, so you can approve of it. Approve of yourself as you are. God approves you as you are. Approve yourself as you are. But then if you really approve of yourself as you are, you'll want to improve yourself to be the best version of yourself that you can be. But this poor body image, this self-hate or self anger, it permeates all of your relationships.

What is the solution to this? We're going to uproot this too, but you have to see that your value comes from within. You have more value than the birds of the air, the Bible says. God could build his home. God could build his temple of gold. He could build his temple of angels. He could build his temple out of anything. He built this temple in a new universe and make it a more glorious temple than could ever be created. But he chooses to make you his temple. You see, he loves your body enough to come and live inside of it. You might not love it enough, but he loves it enough to come and live inside of it.

Let's pray right now. Let's uproot this, this self-hatred of our bodies. This poor body image, the view, the image we have of it. It's great. Your body is carrying God in it. It is carrying the Holy Spirit. Is it in its best condition? Probably not. But that's most likely because you don't value yourself fully the way God values you. If he finds your body fit enough to live in, you need to find your body fit enough and make your body fitter, fit-er, better because you value it, not because you devalue it. Now we speak. Right now I speak to this tree of insecurity from a poor body image, self-hatred. I speak to this tree and I say, Be uprooted. You tree of insecurity be uprooted and cast into the sea, in Jesus name. Amen. You're getting healed. We're getting healed. Just receive it. Just say I receive that. Say I agree in Jesus name.

Now the fourth root of insecurity is the root of comparisons comparing ourselves to others, the need for the approval of others. We're preoccupied with other people who seem smarter than us, wealthier than us, nicer looking than us, more attractive than us, more successful than us. And this creates this this instability, this insecurity in us because we're comparing ourselves to the other people's image that they're creating. That might not even be their reality, but they're creating a reality of an image that you're comparing yourself to. And this this root of insecurity comes from comparing ourselves with others and the way the way out. We're going to uproot that root as well.

But the way out is Ephesians 614. We talked about it last week putting on as a breastplate, God's approval. The breastplate of righteousness is the breastplate of God's approval because you've accepted Jesus into your life, you have God's approval, that is your breastplate, that is what you must protect your heart, against comparing against disapproval, against the addiction for other people's approval. Let's be healed of this. Let's be let's uproot this tree of insecurity that comes from comparing and not feeling approved, feeling observed, but not approved in the name of Jesus. We speak to that tree of insecurity that is rooted in our disapproval of ourselves, a comparison of ourselves to others, and we say be uprooted and cast into the sea in Jesus name, Amen.

Now. Whew! Just breathe in and just say I receive that healing. Just say that out loud. The spirit of insecurity, the roots of insecurity. I speak to them to be uprooted from my life and cast into the sea. Cast into the sea in Jesus name. Why is this so important? Why is this so important? It's important because insecurity leads to withdrawal from relationships. Insecurity causes men to withdraw from being around other men, and women to withdraw from being around any woman that poses a threat to them. It's the insecurity that is speaking to you. We should surround ourselves with the right people, but it starts by surrounding ourself with our self and being the right person to ourself and treating ourself right, loved and approved and beloved of God, beloved of the Father. Insecurity leads to aggressiveness, you know, over aggressiveness like passive aggressiveness or anger leads to feeling threatened.

So you lash out or you overcompensate. Try to prove that you're something. Insecurity leads us to letting the wrong people influence our lives. People that aren't rooted in God's Word, people that aren't rooted in God's love. It makes us hard to take correction. If you're finding yourself, you get defensive, prideful, angry when correction comes into your life, whether it's correction from a parent as a child, correction from a police officer on the street, a correction from a somebody in a church or in a school. We have to understand that God gives authority not to abuse others, but to serve others. We can't be afraid of taking correction because it can only improve our lives if anything, even if even if what the other person is saying is wrong... How we respond to that and how we process that is where we get the win.

It's where we improve ourselves. Even if even if it's not true, what they're saying, what they're correcting you about, you could say, you know what, thank you. I'm going to take a hard look at myself on that. I don't see it yet, but I'm going to take a hard look because you must see something that I'm not seeing. Maybe I have a blind spot there. Just that kind of response is maturing you in that moment and healing you see, insecurity leads to jealousy and all sorts of other negative emotions that come from a sense of not belonging, come from a sense of not feeling power, feeling powerless. Insecurity reduces us to something I describe as mere mortality. It says in first Corinthians three, aren't you still fleshly because you're walking like mere man. He's like, When you have jealousy and strife, you're walking like mere men.

We are not called to be like mere men were called to be God's men and God's women. We're called to be sons and daughters of God's glory. But when you are insecure, it makes you jealous and it makes you compare yourself and it makes you angry. But here's what will deliver you from that being not rooted in love and the power of God when we're not rooted in love, in the power of God, like Ephesians three talks about we will be insecure, we will be angry, we will get jealous so easily. But what heals us from this powerlessness and this lack of real self acceptance and approval is we don't understand how God sees us, how the Father sees us. But here's how He sees us.

If I take you over to Matthew 17, verse five at the Transfiguration, the father spoke the following words about Jesus. He said, When Jesus was there with Peter and James and John and they saw Moses and Elijah talking to Jesus, but the father said about Jesus, This is my son whom I love, whom I'm pleased with. Listen to him. Notice he says, he says three things. This is my son, whom I love. That's your identity. Remember, he's talking about Jesus. But first, John chapter four, verse 17 says, As he is, So are we in this world as he is, so are we. Jesus said that I'm making you like me. God said He's making us in his image. God sees us When you accept Jesus, He sees you the way He sees Jesus. And how is that? He says, This is my son, whom I love. This is my dearly loved son.

So he's, number one, this passage that God speaks to them, the Father speaks to them, He's affirming Jesus' identity. He's declaring Jesus' identity. This is my son, whom I love. Listen, there are many voices competing today that want to define you. Jesus knew who he was, and therefore he was able to fulfill his God given purpose. We need to recognize the only voice that we need to be listening to. The main voice, and whatever voice we listen to needs to be echoing the main voice of the father, saying, I love you. You are my dearly loved son or daughter. That sense of identity that we've been talking about for weeks or months here. That is what the father's voice is speaking. So often people are trying to hear a voice from God, a voice from heaven. This is the voice. Until you hear this voice, you will not hear the voice concerning anything else until you know this is what God is saying.

Number one, He says, This is my son, whom I love. That's identity. Number two, He says, With him, I'm well pleased. This is approval. With him, I'm well pleased. What pleases God is our faith. Believing him, trusting him. Our emotional health and well-being must also flow from the father. Have you ever thought about and wondered why was Jesus able to tolerate so much rejection, so much ridicule, so much opposition, so much suffering because he knew he was pleasing to the father and that was enough for him. He knew he had the father's approval. He knew he had the father's affirmation, and that was enough for him. That's why he was able to say, as I quoted in John 5:44, I believe from the New Living translation, he said to the religious people there and the people that were around him, Your approval means nothing to me. I'm not seeking your approval. I don't need it. It doesn't mean anything to me.

Whether you approve of me, whether you disapprove of me means nothing because God approves of me. The Father approves of me. Boy, when you know that you're pleasing to God just because you're His son or daughter and you are trusting Him... Without faith, without trust, it's impossible to please God. Doing things for God is not what pleases Him. Believing him and trusting him that pleases him and trusting him will result in you doing great things for God. So number one, we see the Father speaking into Jesus identity and speaking his identity into existence. Secondly, he speaks his approval into existence. And then third, he says, Listen to him. He said, This is my son, whom I love. With him, I'm well pleased. Listen to him.

So now notice Jesus' authority comes from the Father. Jesus, The father is saying, I don't need you guys focused on Moses and Elijah. They had a lot of good things to say, but they're not my son. Like this is my son. Listen to him. Whatever those guys said was good for their time. Listen to him. Listen to him. Authority comes. You begin to walk in your God given authority. When you understand your identity is from God. When you understand your approval is from God, then you end up walking in your authority that's from God. Whatever God has called you to, He's equipped you with the authority to bring it to pass. You see, it glorifies God when his children are influencing the world, it glorifies God when his children are praying, when his children are prophesying, it gives glory to God.

When his children are changing the atmosphere with their words, changing the atmosphere with their prayers, changing lives, with their prayers, changing lives with generosity, changing lives with love in action. Jesus said in John 14, I think it's verse 13, he said, And whatsoever you ask in my name that will I do. That the Father may be glorified in the Son. Wow. Think about this. We have that kind of authority to pray in that kind of way. The scope of our prayer is as large as how much we're willing to ask for. Whatever you ask in my name, Jesus said, I will do it. In other words, the scope of prayer, the authority you have to pray has no limits, no horizons, no foes can stand against it.

God wants you to reach out to the furthest horizons of prayer and use the strength and power that you have in the name of Jesus. Use the authority you have in the name of Jesus. You know why this kind of praying and this kind of asking and this kind of going to God freely about, you know, why it's so powerful? Because it gives God glory. You know why it gives him glory. Because when you go to God in that way, when you speak to the mountains, in that way, when you use your God given authority in life to pray, to prophesied, to be generous, to give, you're acting like God, you're made in his image, so you're acting like him the best the best way to satisfy or the best way to glorify is the right word. The best way to truly glorify God is to act like you by walking in your God given identity, approval and authority.

Listen, as I close, what are some simple steps we can take to experience the father fathering us the way the father fathers and fathered Jesus on Earth? Number one, you can go directly to the Father. We already said in John 14, but also John 16:26 and I will not need Jesus said and I will not need to ask the Father on your behalf, for you'll ask him directly because of your new relationship with me. Now, this is a beautiful verse. Go directly to the Father. Jesus is saying You can go directly to the Father because your relationship with me, you can go directly to the father. Go to the father. Ask him to heal you. Go to the father. Ask him to bless you. Go to the father. Ask him to love you. Go to the father. Ask him to show you. Show you his plan, his purpose for your life.

John 16:27 In the Amplified Bible, it says, For the father himself tenderly loves you. The father himself tenderly loves you. Know that he himself, he doesn't delegate his tender love to somebody else to do for you. He himself tenderly loves you. Go to the father, number one. Come home to your father, number two. Have you been away from God? Come home. Have you been away from your church family? Come home. Find your home with the father. Psalm 68, verse five, says, He's a father to the fatherless. I love what the NIV says of this verse. A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy habitation. And then I love this Christian standard version, God in his holy dwelling is a father of the fatherless and a champion of widows. God is a champion. The father is a champion of widows, a champion of orphans, a champion of his sons and daughters.

So number one, go directly to the father. Number two, come home to the father. Number three, show care for the fatherless. Show care for the fatherless. We're going to have a moment now to live out what James 1:27, says, because this is our tradition at Life Changers Church, every Father's Day. We celebrate it by receiving the healing from our Father, but also representing our Father to the fatherless, to the least of these to the ones who can't help themselves. James, 1:27, says The religion that God our father approves of is pure and faultless. To look after orphans and widows and to keep oneself from being polluted by this world.

Notice what he says. The religion that our father accepts, the religion that our father approves of, is that which looks after orphans and widows in their distress. Now, if you've never been around for one of our Fathers Day services, you you wouldn't know until we explained to you. And I'll just take a brief moment that we have full time missionaries in Haiti who are feeding an orphanage, an orphanage that we have there, cares for the entire well-being and the education of 80 orphans, children who have been abandoned, abused and left starving. We have medical care and we have a church there. We have a school there. Disaster recovery and relief, earthquake resistant home building there.

Last month, I reached out to our missionaries that we support there to see what their greatest need was. They said, First of all, we want to thank you, pastor and LIfe Changers Church. We have been through a lot together. Ten years ago, you built a church in a place we now call Miracle Village, which is home to earthquake survivors. About 600 families, the Life Changers Church in Miracle Village is absolutely beautiful and packed every Sunday. It's a lighthouse for the gospel in Haiti. This is one of the things that we do for the fatherless. Our greatest need has changed from food to medical help due to the gang violence. We are building a medical hub that will help rescue children whose father, one child, his name is Lionel. His father burned, burned him in boiling water and then abandoned him.

These are the kids we're reaching. These are the babies we're reaching. Woo! I want to ask you to give towards this. I want to ask you to give to the fatherless. I want to ask you to step up and do something for the fatherless and the widows. After I told him that life changers would support this initiative, they said we honestly had to fight back tears to think that God loves us that much, that he would be concerned about our need. We will now be able to support surgeries by good doctors, to help these children, to have a place to heal and recover, and a second chance at life. God is the God of second chances. Let's be a part of his hand to give people orphans, particularly, a second chance.

We have many other orphanage efforts in our Life Changers Church in India. You might be seeing some things, some pictures on your screen. This is these are ongoing ministries. These are not like one time things. We do this throughout the year to help and to serve these people. In Ukraine, that's in war and at war because of Russia. We are helping orphans that were abandoned or orphans who parents were lost, killed in the war or lost. Everything we do is to get the gospel out and cover the world, cover the earth with the love of God as the waters cover the sea. Would you take a moment and give? There should be away on your screen right now to help the fatherless. Let's give to the fatherless. What do we do to to invite the father to heal us? We go directly to the father. We come home to the father, and we do for the fatherless and give to the fatherless. Take a moment. Click on one of those links or text to give. And let me pray for you.

Father, thank you that every person connected to me right now, we come directly to you through Jesus Christ, through the blood of Jesus, to heal where each had been wounded, damaged, broken, disapproved of, rejected, abandoned. We just speak healing that the father would heal and father each and every one of us to our well-being and our healing in Jesus name.

And if you've never accepted Jesus in your life, pray this prayer with me. Just say:

Jesus come into my life. I accept you as my Savior. I believe you died for my sin. You rose from the dead. I believe you rose from the dead. And now I'm a child of God. Amen.

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