THE EVANGELICAL CHURCH WINNING ALL (ECWA)
5007 SOUTHSIDE DRIVE
LOUISVILLE, KY 40214
TOPIC: Father’s Day
TEXT: Eph. 6: 1-4, 5: 26-33;
Rev. (Dr.) Stephen K. Awoniyi
The Origin of Father’s Day could be explained thus: In 1909 in Spokane, Washington, a Christian Woman named Sonora Louise Smart Dodd, first thought of a day to honor her father, Henry Jackson Smart. She was in church that day listening to a Mother's Day sermon when the idea came to her.
For her, since the death of her mother, she was raised and nurtured by her father. To her, her father is the most wonderful man; courageous, loving, selfless, and all that the Almighty Father wants a father to be. Since her father's birthday was in the month of June, therefore, Sonora Dodd celebrated the first Father's Day on June 19th, 1910. Fourteen years later in 1924, President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed the third Sunday in June as Father's Day. In 1972, President Nixon established a permanent U.S. observance of Father's Day which was held on the third Sunday of June. Therefore, the idea for creating a day for children to honor their fathers began in the heart of a woman Sonora Louise Smart Dodd. Since then Fathers’ day is being celebrated throughout the world on 3rd Sunday of the month of June every year.
In view of the above explanation, it is highly expected for every church to honor all fathers including mothers with prayers that they may be all that God wants them to be. That is, a loving husband to his wife, an exemplary father and mother to their children, and a honest and faithful contributing citizen to the Kingdom of God in the world and in the society. The Scripture says;
Children and Parents
6 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 “Honor your father and mother,” which is the first commandment with promise: 3 “that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth.”[a] 4 And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.
Bondservants and Masters
5 Bondservants, be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in sincerity of heart, as to Christ; 6 not with eye service, as men-pleasers, but as bondservants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart, 7 with goodwill doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men, 8 knowing that whatever good anyone does, he will receive the same from the Lord, whether he is a slave or free.
9 And you, masters, do the same things to them, giving up threatening, knowing that your own Master also[b] is in heaven, and there is no partiality with Him.
The Whole Armor of God
10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age,[c] against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand (Ephesians 6:1-13 (NKJV).
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body,[a] of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.”[b] 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband (Ephesians 5:25-33 (NKJV).
In 1912, there was a Father's Day celebration in Vancouver, Washington, which was suggested by a Methodist preacher, Pastor J. J. Berringer of the Irvingtom Methodist Church. He carefully followed the 1911 calendar which was suggestion by the Pastor at Portland Oregon, Harry C. Meek. Pastor Harry C. Meek suggested that the third Sunday in the month of June should be chosen because that was his birthday. Pastor Harry C. Meek made many efforts to promote Father's Day in order to make it an official holiday. In the United States, the woman Sonora Louise Smart Dodd used "Father’s Day" spelling on her original petition for the holiday, but the spelling "Father's Day" was already used in 1913 when a bill was introduced to the U.S. Congress as the first attempt to establish the holiday.
Dearly beloved, how do you love one another either in the church or in the community? Be assured that the Scripture says husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word. That He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. Husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies because he who loves his wife loves himself. Likewise, wives love your husbands for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church, because we are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones. The Scripture continues by saying, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.”