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I know it’s not quite Father’s Day yet, but as I was re-watching this episode (my fav Friends wedding), I thought about how sometimes our fathers come in the unlikeliest of forms. Until this moment, I never saw Joey as a father-figure to Phoebe — he didn’t either. But he is, because he chooses to be. Phoebe’s real dad abandoned her, her step-dad is in prison, and Joey steps up to the plate in true Tribiani form to fill the vacant role. He drills both Mike and his parents. He even steps up to officiate the wedding when the minister gets snowed in.

Which brings me to my next point, because the moment the “father” role in the wedding opens up both Ross and Chandler fight to be able to be that for Pheebs. So, yeah, she grew up without a strong father-figure, but now she has more dads — men who are willing to love her unconditionally, sacrifice for her, and be there no strings attached — than most of us.

The thing is, being a father or a mother is not just a biological or marital role, it is a decision people make to love like a father or mother. To love like God, the Father. And it is such a beautiful love to watch…

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We love because he first loved us. ~ 1 John 4:19

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