Since you call on a Father who judges each person’s work impartially, live out your time as foreigners here in reverent fear. (1 Peter 1:17)
“Mom always liked you best!” If that rings a bell, you might have been around in the 1960s when the Smothers Brothers were dominating comedy, even getting their own variety show. That was Tommy’s signature zinger, and it always made us laugh. But that was comedy. In real life, favoritism usually does not play out so well. Jacob did it when he favored Joseph over his brothers. He should have known better. His father Isaac did the same thing, favoring his brother Esau over him.
A 2005 study published in the Journal of Family Psychology found that out of 384 families, 74 percent of mothers and 70 percent of fathers admitted to having a favorite child. As a parent, it is natural to be drawn to those whose personalities and interests mirror our own. But that same study also carried a warning. Just because it is common to show consistent favoritism, that does not make it okay or harmless. In fact, research has shown that it can damage a child.
We have a Father who will never play favorites. Without exception, he paid for and frees anyone who comes to him, making them a part of his family. The result should be lives that reflect gratitude and deep respect for a Father who would go to such lengths for us. It’s the least we can do.
Live in such a way that expresses gratitude to the Father for what he has done.
Marcy Burke enjoys living in Alabama, being a retired pastor’s wife, former missionary, and worship leader. She enjoys playing the piano and taking long walks with her husband, Larry.
© 2023 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.