Summary: The family relationships we have should be defined by Love.

“Defined by Love”

“The family relationships we have should be defined by Love.”

Luke 15:11-32

Sunday Morning Sermon – Father’s day


Intro: (Start with Text and title)

Good morning. Mother’s day – the church is filled with people – everyone smiling, roses are passed out – kids are happy, Momma’s happy – if she’s happy then everyone can be happy.

I think they teach us to preach something different on Father’s day. Somehow, I’m suppose to remind you of your responsibility, I’m suppose to tell you how everything in this country that is wrong starts and stops with you. I’m supposed to kinda beat you down. This is common practice in our churches – one man leaving a father’s day service said – “If that’s father’s day, they should call the first day of deer season, Deer day.”

But I’ve got a deal for you this morning – this includes everyone – if you will simply listen – I won’t pull out the spiritual baseball bat. It is not my desire to run anyone in the ground.

This is going to be interactive – In one word the church should be defined by what? Love. (Advance)

John 13:35 – By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."

So if we are loving those around us – then all men are going to know who we follow – ok, that’s simple enough. Follow me.

Another question – In one word describe God. Love. Same word. (Advance)

1 John 4:8 – Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.

God is our heavenly father – men, we have someone who has given us an example, not only through the way God acts but the way Jesus acts – Jesus did only what the father told him.

If God is love – and the church should be defined by our love – shouldn’t the characteristic that defines the church and defines God – shouldn’t it also define who we are as fathers, dads, Men, people? My question this morning is: what defines your relationship with your children, with your family?


My dad is a truck driver for a man who hauls rock to oil rigs in North Texas. So dad will sit in his truck and think about things – and then he’ll call me. He does this often. We were talking really about this right here – I told him I wanted Hailey to know that she is deeply loved – above everything else. When she is at church camp and someone is talking to her about God’s love – and they’ll use the word “heavenly father” I don’t want everything to shut down because of her earthly father – I want her to go – YEAH, SIGN ME UP FOR THAT.

My dad was talking to my mom about her childhood and they were comparing details – and he said she couldn’t remember anything but the fighting – I think she almost killed her brother with a pitch fork. She was one of 12 kids – she honestly couldn’t remember anything but the fighting.

Dad went on to tell me about grandpa and some of the neat things they did – and then he kinda stopped. It was my turn to recall all the wonderful times – but the thing is – we didn’t really have any bad times. The few bad times we had – he was the hero, not the cause. So yeah, there were the fishing trips and the bull dozer that we spent HOURS on, and learning to drive, and all that. But if one word could describe his relationship with me – it would be love.

God looks at the church and says – Love will define you. God asks us to look at him and says Love defines me. Dads, husbands, men – Love should define your relationships with your family.

There is a story – one we have all probably heard repeated, possibly even preached – it’s a great story.

Turn with me if you have your Bibles to (Advance) Luke 15:11-32 (Read)

If there was one characteristic that the father in this story has – it’s love. I see three things this morning about the father’s love.


I. Love: Lets Him Go

Let me start at the beginning – Jesus is telling a story

a. A man had two sons – one older and one younger

The younger son wasn’t happy. It doesn’t say why – but he and the father were not on the same page.

i. The younger son – approaches his dad – basically says something like this: I have figured out that after you are dead, I’ll get 100,000 dollars – I want it now.

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