In the 14th Century the revelation of the Son swept the earth with Martin Luther teaching the way of salvation. In the 20th Century the revelation of the Holy Spirit and pentecostalism became popular with healing evangelists like Smith Wigglesworth, and Rodney Howard Brown. I feel Today the revelation of the Father I believe is becoming more prevalent.
The last script of the Old testament finishes with
Malachi 4 The hearts of the fathers to the children,
And the hearts of the children to their fathers.
For many they understand the Son, and for some the Holy Spirit but most see the Father as distant and uninvolved. Most see ourselves in a better light as fathers then God our father.
Historically spiritual awakenings have only lasted one or two generations. This is because the children did not stand on the fathers shoulders and the work was reset. Many times because the fathers were too busy doing the work of the Lord and he children were uninvolved or at worst resentful.
I think we will see a shift from visitation to habitation. Much in line with what is happening naturally. Present, active and involved. A time when God lives with us continuely like a mirroring what an earthly father does.
I see the father heart of God is being restored to the church. The father is walking the bride down the aisle. The father heart of God brings a different spirit to the church.
Fathers don’t talk as much. They speak with actions. When they do speak it carries weight and people listen.
Fathers like spending time doing things rather talking about things. Shoulder to shoulder rather then face to face. Fathers enjoy providing. They bring in the wealth. Fathers are establishers. They build cities. Fathers are protectors. They bring a safe environment for babies. Fathers are the story tellers and jokers. Fathers are a more practical. They get to the point. Fathers don’t burn their children out expecting long hours. Fathers are aware of the health of their children. Fathers are actively involved in disciplining children in a way that is beneficial for the child.
I feel orphans will be gathered and fathered. A sense of performance won’t be prevalent but a sense of initiation and rites of passage made clear in a loving context will be accessible.
I believe the hearts of the fathers will learn from the sons and vice versa. It won’t’ be hierarchal leadership but mutual relational leadership. A place where we can question authority and not feel like we will loose our job but be understood that we are seeking wisdom. Fathers love to wrestle with their kids. A place where nanny state policies are done away with and helicopter mother governments remove red tape. The old guard are kept young while the young test there metal uninhibited by redundant and interfering systems. I believe the wisdom of time as a father with the awareness of the current time as a child is a potent combination.
As a member of Hillsong church I do find it interesting that the father aspect of the trinity is not mentioned in the current Vision statement of 2014. The final sentence of the Vision statement reads.
‘Whose head is Jesus, Help is the Holy Spirit and whose focus is the Great Commission.’
In the past I would have suggested we change the statement to.
“Whose head is Jesus, Help is the Holy Spirit, Heart is of the Father and whose focus is the Great Commission.”
But I believe its omission to be an interesting statement itself. The father doesn’t need to be talked about. When a baby is born it can’t say “Father”. It doesn’t make the fathers role invalid. Fatherhood is in the very nature of Hillsong church and is carried in the leadership. The whole vision statement is full and brimming with the heart of the Father. It is another level to embody the fathers heart rather then merely talk about it. A friend at work showed me a picture yesterday. It was his child’s first portrait. A mess of disjointed lines but it was a clear image of a man with glasses and a beard. It gave so much joy to him as he quipped ‘I was the first face he ever painted!’. He never taught his son what he looked like or how to draw his son just learnt his nature by being with him.
Jesus didn’t just do what the father said. He did what saw the father doing.
John 5:19 Jesus gave them this answer: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.
I am currently on a journey to see the father. I have always believed if I see the father I would be dead, now I am starting to realise its the only way to operate because thats how Jesus did. I will elaborate on this in the next chapter.
A son and daughter doesn’t just take orders. They mimic their parents. They don’t take notes, they take on the very nature, copying mannerism, attitudes, facial expressions, mirroring them in all facets of their life. It doesn’t need to be said it happens by osmosis, in the very act of being present together over a lifetime.
A father leaves a legacy. They will sacrifice for their sons to go further. A father will give up his platform to share it with his son and support him from behind the scenes. We will see people who see there purpose in the next generation rather then in their ministry.
I am all about the heart of the church. I believe Hillsong does have the heart of the father. The same spirit that the Father had when he ran for the prodigal son. It is a allegory for God who only runs in one circumstance, towards us. He can fly or teleport if he really wants to but he enters the gravity of our world and runs towards us in our reality. I am starting to see people not as christian or non christian but as fathered or fatherless.
John 14:16 “I will not leave you as orphans but I will come to you.”
In media I believe you will start to see a return to esteeming fatherhood. This week the top story writer from Channel 7, 65 year old Bevan Lee brought up the fact that fathers in childrens cartoons are always seen as buffoons. He felt setting a culture like this is a very dangerous message for the next generation. Below is a recent documentary by a film company called “Variable” in the states. It highlights what its like with an absent father.
Here in a recent whisky ad, you can see the shift in tone. The love of a father strikes to the core.
I also don’t think its a coincidence I am working with children under 3 creating kids curriculum. Ironically even in this cartoon we created we are still pleasing the grumpy bear. I think the grumpy bear wants to give us a hug!
Hillsong Kids Curriculum (under 3) – Melody and Max Pilot Cartoon
I feel the children’s ministry is very important. It is the nursery for some of our greatest leaders the earth has ever seen. More then our generation. Pouring in everything we have to them with boundaries and love over the next 30 years should be one of our highest priorities.
Next I will talk on the gateway to death. If Jesus is a gate to the father does it open both ways?