…and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” Matt 3:17
He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” Matt 17:5
“Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven: “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.” John 12:27-28 (ESV)
There are three times in the gospels where the Father audibly speaks so others can hear him. The first two times, at Jesus’ baptism and Transfiguration, is it significant that the Father takes the occasion to publically affirm his Son and tell the world how pleased he is with him.
The third time is right before Jesus was going to the cross. Jesus said that he was troubled about the prospect of dying on the cross to pay for all of our sins. Would this be about Jesus being comfortable or about glorifying the Father by being obedient? The Father responds by saying that it is about glorifying him—which will be through obedience and doing a hard thing.
What can we learn from this? Observe the ratio of the three things the Father spoke out loud. Two affirmations; one reminder that he must proceed with doing a hard thing.
This is a good reminder on what our communication should be with others, particularly family and people we are around a lot. When appropriate, we should encourage people to get the job done, even when it is hard. But more importantly, we need to remember to affirm, perhaps twice as much.