A Sunday School teacher once asked her class of small children, "If you could have any kind of father you wanted, what kind would you choose?" One little girl , whose father traveled often in his job, said, "One who would stay home with me." A child from a poor neighborhood said, "A rich daddy!" Another chimed in, "One big and strong!" And a child whose dad was noted for his quick temper said, "He'd love me very softly."
When everyone had finished, the teacher read them some Bible verses: "Have we not all one father?" n1 "I . . . will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty." n2 She then assured the children that each of them already had a perfect Father, who includes all of the desired qualities -- ever-presence, infinite goodness, eternal power, gentleness, and love.
n1 Malachi 2:10;
n2 II Corinthians 6:17 18;
Christ Jesus recognized the fatherhood of God, not only for himself but for all. He taught his disciples to pray, "Our Father which art in heaven . . .," n 3 and he laid claim to his full spiritual inheritance as the Son of God. "All things that the Father hath are mine," n4 he declared. We can all claim for ourselves this legacy of good from our perfect Father as we follow Jesus' teachings and practice his Christianity.
n3 Matthew 6:9;
n4 John 16-15;
Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, defines "Father" in the Christian Science textbook as "Eternal Life; the one Mind; the divine Principle, commonly called God." n5 As heir to Life's qualities, man -- the true man, God's spiritual image -- includes freedom, activity, uninterrupted progress, eternal being. As heir of Mind, he expresses intelligent perception and clear understanding. And as the heir of divine Principle, man reflects strength power, stability, and systematic order.
n5 Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,m p. 586;
Unlike a human father, who can't be with every child every moment, our heavenly Father is always present. As we understand this, we can find a happier and more harmonious relationship with a human parent. But God is with us twenty four hours a day and throughout eternity. We can't get out of His presence, the presence of good.
We're always with our Father and He is always with us. His law, obeyed, sustains and preserves us. "But how can one Father take care of so many children?" one may wonder. There is only one multiplication table, and yet each of us can use it as freely as if we were its sole proprietor. There is only one God, but His infinitude as incorporeal Principle makes Him available to all simultaneously.
"God's law is in three words," writes Mrs. Eddy, "'I am All;' and this perfect law is ever present to rebuke any claim of another law." n6 Christian Science reveals that the false supposition of another law, another presence, power, activity, mind -- another Father -- constitutes the sum total of evil's claim. "Call no man your father upon the earth," said the Master, "for one is your Father, which is in heaven." n7
n6 No and Yes,m p. 30;
n7 Matthew 23:9.m
Like those Sunday School children, we can rejoice in the spiritual fact that we have someone with us always, to love and care for us, to protect and preserve us, to guide and govern us, to provide for every rightful need. We have God. What a perfect Father! DAILY BIBLE VERSE I will arise and to to my father, and I will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, and am no more worthy to be called thy son . . . . But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and ki ssed him. Luke 15:18-20