From My Perspective
The Heavenly Father’s Heart
This article is excerpted from the book, T4T: A Discipleship Re-Revolution by Steve Smith with Ying Kai and used by permission of WIGTake Resources
A young student in Taiwan worked hard to pass an important exam that would enable him to get into a good middle school. He really wanted a new bicycle to ride thirty minutes to the new school, but doubted he would get it since his family was so poor. One day, however, as he passed his parents’ bedroom, he heard his father comment to his mother that he would buy a new bicycle for the young student. The son was overjoyed. That night before bed, he asked his father for a new bicycle. But his father said, “No!” The son was perplexed but did not give up because he knew his father’s heart! As he persisted, his father finally said, “Yes.” The next day he had a new bicycle.
The son said: “Because I knew my father’s heart, I never gave up. If I didn’t know his heart, I probably would have given up. So if we know our heavenly Father’s heart, we will have more confidence to do what He wants us to do.”
Throughout the Bible, God chooses a person to save along with his whole household. Here are some examples.
- Noah (Genesis 6-9) – Because of Noah’s righteous life, even though the whole world was corrupt, God saved Noah and used him to save his whole family on the ark. God saved Noah and all who belonged to him.
- Lot (Genesis 19) – Lot lived in a wicked city. Yet Lot lived righteously and God saved him and his whole household before the city was destroyed. God saved Lot and all who belonged to him.
- Rahab (Joshua 6) – Rahab was a prostitute who put her hope in God. God saved her and her whole household even though her city was destroyed.
- The Gerasene Demoniac (Mark 5:1-20) – God cast many evil spirits out of a violent man and then immediately sent him to tell his family and friends in their cities. Before he had even finished one training session, Jesus sent him to bring salvation to his oikos (household). God saved the demoniac and all who belonged to him.
- Cornelius (Acts 10-11) – Cornelius was an important army officer who was seeking God. God brought him the good news and saved him. Cornelius gathered everyone who belonged to him and they were all saved; God saved Cornelius and all who belonged to him.
- Lydia (Acts 11) – Lydia was a worshiper of God who heard the gospel. God saved her and her entire household – all who belonged to her.
- The Philippian Jailer (Acts 16) – The jailer was far from God, not seeking God, yet God had mercy on him. That very night God saved him. With urgency, he woke up his family to hear the good news and become baptized.
Would you wake up your whole family at midnight and share the gospel with them? In Acts 16, the Philippian jailor could not wait. Perhaps his family thought, “It’s midnight, why are you waking us up?” Perhaps he said, “If it had not been for these men, I might be dead right now. These two gentlemen saved us.” He could not wait. He asked Paul and Silas to come to his house. At midnight, the jailer and his whole family came to Christ.
God loves you, chooses you, and works through you to save your whole family. This is your heavenly Father’s heart. If you know His heart, then you will not give up asking Him for what is in His heart. The responsibility is yours to witness to your own. As you pray and witness to your oikos (household), don’t give up on them. Keep loving them and sharing with them. Be persistent.