Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
The word father occurs more than 500 times in the Old Testament, referring almost exclusively to human fathers. It was Jesus who popularized the term “Father” as a reference to God (Matthew 5:16; Malachi 2:10) and gave His disciples permission to do the same: “Our Father in heaven . . .” (Matthew 6:9a). It is the Holy Spirit who bears witness to our human spirit that we are God’s children and that He is our Father (Romans 8:16).
It is that same Holy Spirit, indwelling Jesus (Matthew 3:16; John 3:34), who created the life of intimacy between Father and Son during Jesus’ earthly ministry. Because we have the same Spirit dwelling in us, Jesus’ relationship with the Father is a model for our own relationship with the Father. Jesus said, “For I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak” (John 12:49; see also John 4:34; 5:30; 6:38; 7:28; 8:28, 42; 14:10, 31). Jesus withdrew often to discern, then do, the will of His Father (Luke 5:16). And He did nothing else.
Prayer serves the same purpose in our life—to draw near to the Father so that we may fulfill His will.
What is a Christian?… The richest answer I know is that a Christian is one who has God as his Father.
J. I. Packer