He will not always chide, nor will He keep His anger forever. He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His steadfast love toward those who fear Him. Psalm 103:9-11
A "deadbeat dad" is not a deceased father who used to play the drums. In modern lingo a deadbeat dad is a parent who has failed to make court-ordered child support payments.
As of right now, the State of Arizona has recognized 421 deadbeat parents. These are mostly men who, over the last five years, have run up sizable amounts which they owe for the raising of their children.
The question Arizona has been asking is what to do with these negligent parents?
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey thinks he may have an answer. He says Arizona is going to publicly embarrass these "losers" (his words, not mine). That's right. Arizona is going to use a Twitter account to publish the photos and the names of these parents. In a public statement the governor gave notice, saying, "For too long, you've been able to remain anonymous, able to skirt your financial and legal responsibilities with no shame. If you don't want your embarrassing, unlawful, and irresponsible behavior going viral: man up and pay up."
Officials report that two dads have already responded: one of whom owes his family more than $170,000.
Now I don't know if such a course of action is wise, or fair, or if it is even legal. I do know I am glad the Lord doesn't treat His people that way. Think of how it would be if the Lord went on Twitter or Facebook and said something like
* "Last year I gave John Q. Christian a salary of $100,000. During that same time period he showed his appreciation by giving $5 to his church."
* "For the last decade I have, with the exception of a single bout with the flu and two colds, given John Christian good health. He complained about the sickness, but he never thanked me for his good health."
* "John was confirmed 30 years ago. Since that time his church has offered Communion over 1,200 times. During that same time period John has received the Sacrament 23 times, and none of those times has been in the last six years."
No, the Lord doesn't work that way. Instead, our God's steadfast love waits for His people to respond to the great gift of salvation Jesus made in His life, suffering, death and resurrection. Although God will not wait forever, He knows that those who have truly seen His redemption are going to have appreciative hearts.
He knows His people will never respond to Jesus by being deadbeat believers.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, in the manger, on the cross, and at the empty tomb, I have seen Your love. May my heart be filled with thanksgiving for the forgiveness and salvation which Your Son has won for me. This I ask in the Savior's Name. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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