But, rather from the understanding that my children aren’t “my” children – they are God’s children first. I am merely their earthly father who has been given the great task of raising up His children.
What a humbling call. To think that the one who created us for Himself would entrust me with the crown jewel of the created order — one of His children. But, I must remember another fact. I am one of His children also!
When I think of the 'father' from the "Our Father", yes, I think of my own father. I also think of my father's shortcomings and failings - but not in that is how I think of our heavenly Father. I think of our heavenly father as like my father, but the fulfillment of my earthly father. I think of all the personality traits my father has (or doesn't have), and realize that our heavenly Father is the totality of that.
The 'father' also reminds me of my own call as a parent - that I am merely a steward of my children, that they have been given as gifts to me, and that children are never a 'right' for any human being. But also to think of the flip-side of that: that my parents were/are the stewards of me, and my siblings - and that any failing they may have had (or I have) as a parent is their own sinful humanity, and doesn't reflect upon the love that our heavenly Father has for each one of us. That I should always strive as a parent to reflect, as much as possible, to my children the love that our God in heaven, our Father, has for us.
Not much of a reflection, I'm afraid, but it's just what came to mind.