by Kathleen Whitten
“A father to the fatherless,
a defender of widows,
God sets the lonely in families. Those who receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior become part of God’s family. They are brothers and sisters in Christ. Spiritually speaking brothers and sisters in Christ share the same blood type: Jesus’ blood.
We have brothers and sisters in Christ all around the world. But our most intimate connection is our brothers and sisters in our church family. God made it this way. Read about the early church. Each city had within its walls church families—brothers and sisters in Christ.
Psalm 68:5-6 says God is a father to the fatherless and a defender of widows. Does that mean that God comes down to earth to literally be the father and the defender? No, God has already come down. He lives and dwells in the hearts of His children. As God’s family, we are to be the father to the fatherless and the defender to the widow.
James 1:27 tells us God’s priorities for His family: “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.”
Whereas God wants us to care for all people, Galatians 6:10 helps narrow the main scope of our focus to match God’s focus: “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.”
Who is in your household of faith? Certainly all your brothers and sisters in Christ, but more specifically your brothers and sisters in your church.
Look around. Ask God to open your eyes and your heart to any brother or sister who might be “fatherless” at your church. Perhaps they do not have a father present in the household, or maybe they do not have an earthly example of a loving father. Could you call them by name each Sunday? Could you offer to take them somewhere with your own children? Could you commit to pray for them? Ask God to show you what He longs to do to love His children through you.
Look around. Ask God to open your eyes and your heart to any who might be “widows.” Whether literal or not, are there women in the church who have been left with no support? Maybe she needs practical help: financial direction, assistance in business matters, etc. But just as importantly, maybe she needs someone to pray with her or listen to her. Maybe she needs an invitation to sit with someone at church or share a meal.
Who does God send to be a father to the fatherless? Who does God send to be a defender of widows? He sends you.
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