You have a unique calling and a duty given you by God Almighty. You are great and have an incredible responsibility. You are the fierce protector, the guidance and measure of your home. You are the leader and decider for your household. This is a job not to be taken lightly and is not for the faint of heart. You are a father.
“The price of greatness is responsibility.”Winston Churchill
I personally know many great dads who are amazing standard-bearers for their families. They hold the line; they are the Gandalf of their homestead, “You shall not pass!” These strong towers that I know are unwilling to compromise and refuse to allow their families to fall into disarray; not on their watch. I am imploring you fathers to follow this same example. The example they offer is not their own, mind you, but the example they’ve learned from Christ. Jesus on earth was not a father biologically. But He has been a father to many. He was with God in the beginning and WAS God. God is our Father. Therefore, Jesus serves as the example of fatherhood in that if you know Him, you know the Father. “Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 11:1) Imitate Him.
Unfortunately, I know other fathers who are not leaders. There are fathers who are weak, uncaring, abusive, or effeminate. I may be offending some, but I believe this message needs to be shared. A man must not be run by emotions; we women do enough of that as it is; we need you to be the logical voice of reason to our emotions. Fathers need to be good to children’s mothers, to protect and honor them and encourage them. They must be as Christ was, “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” (Ephesians 5:25) Fathers must give a good example to their sons of how to treat a woman, a wife. They must give an example to their daughters of what a good man is so when they grow up they can discern between good and bad. Fathers must be led by reason, logic, and compassionate love with the aim to always shield the family at all times. They must be careful not to aggravate their children. This is just part of your calling:
“These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”Deuteronomy 6:6-9
I have been a single mother now for six years. I had to flee from my ex-husband to protect my children, so I know firsthand what the impact fatherlessness has on children. My own father left my mother when I was in high school, so I also know the strains of being a child of divorce, as I’m sure many others are. The statistics are scary: poverty, alcohol and drug abuse, the physical and emotional damage, suicide rates, educational achievement, crime rates, and promiscuity are high-ranking in fatherless children as they grow up. Thankfully for me, I have good, godly men around my children and me, and have submitted myself to God my Father/Jesus, so I am not fearful of those statistics. But, do I wish I didn’t have to be in this position? Yes. Wholeheartedly.
I tell you that tiny bit of my story to tell you this: you are called by God to a ministry unlike any other, and one that is so close to His heart. Don’t squander it, don’t shrug it off, don’t disrespect your calling. Dig in, be present, be stubborn, and do not take lightly the calling to which you have been elected. Submit to God in all things. Read the Word. Pray and pray hard. Pray over your family. Put in the time. Apologize when you make a mistake, but stand your ground when you give your orders. It is fully upon you to maintain order in your home. You are the covering for your wife and your children. Cover well. I love this quote from the book, The Heroic Path: In Search of the Masculine Heart:
“Men are like pickup trucks – We do best when we have weight in the bed. On icy roads, we tend to ski around when there is no weight over the rear tires. We perform best when we carry a load, when others count on us. This is when we rise, when we find our strength.”John Sowers
You fathers have “weight in the bed,” you’re “carrying a load,” and others are counting on you. It’s a high-pressure situation being a father, and this is where you men shine. Take up the mantle of fatherhood well. Carry the load without wavering and without fear. Know that you have an example in Christ to lean on and look to for every answer, for character measuring, and for decision-making. Use Him. Be brave. Be courageous. If you are one of the good ones, I thank you. If you’re not and you know it, there is hope for you yet. Get with God, give your lives to Jesus, and step up to the plate to be all He’s called you and equipped you to be. Surround yourself with men of God who have proven themselves faithful to Him and have ordered families. They will guide you along and point you in Christ’s direction.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”Joshua 1:9
Love your wives, be good to the children, lead well. I’m praying for you all!
A Single Momma
P.S. Happy Father’s Day