We have a relationship that gives us confidence to call God ‘Father’.
Romans 8:15 So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.”
I hear people give God all sorts of strange names: ‘Him up there’ ‘The Big Boss’ ‘Him who might be’ and you will be able to add to the list I’m sure!
But what do you call Him in everyday conversation, and when you pray? Because you have been adopted into God’s family, and have all the legal rights of a child in the family, you are entitled to call him Father, or even Dad.
As a Headmaster I often had parents in my study, dealing with some issue or other involving their child. One of the saddest sights was to come across children who were genuinely frightened of their fathers. I’ve encountered fathers who were verbal (and perhaps physical?) bullies and others who seemed to lack every vestige of human warmth and love. Indeed the concept of ‘Father’ means different things to different people, many of their ideas stemming from their own experiences of a human father.
Adoption is so different! The child has been longed for and chosen, and then has the confidence to speak out the word ‘Dad’. My mother married my step-father when I was 6, and it took nearly 20 years for me to call him ‘Dad’. In fact I called my Father-in-Law ‘Dad’ before I was able to say that about my own step-father. I have every reason to believe that when I plucked up the courage use the ‘D’ word it gave him immense pleasure.
Our heavenly father is delighted to hear us affirm our relationship with him when we think of him, refer to him, and call him ‘Father. So what do you call him in your public conversation and private prayers?