Originally Posted by Mike Young October 2006
Guys, this week I want to challenge you to think about your role and responsibilities as a father. I know lot’s of men who say that the primary focus for their lives is to provide for their families. Many men want to be remembered as a good provider. I understand that and agree, but too many men stop short of providing everything that a child needs.
Of course, the physical needs of your family must be met, but that’s the beginning, not the end.
Many men work hard to meet the physical and material needs of their family then expect or assume that educational, social and spiritual needs will be met by others. We assume that school will teach them how to think, church will teach them about God and their mother will fill in all the gaps. When men think this way, they assume all the bases are covered and they sit back and relax; satisfied that their family had been provided for. Let me just say this…. Wrong.
Men, you personally need to give your kids much more than stuff. Here are some questions to ponder.
- What will your children need to know in order to survive as adults?
- Who will teach them those things?
- Do your children know about your faith life and what you believe?
- How can you share your faith with them?
- What are some life lessons that you learned “the hard way”?
- How could you teach those lessons to your children in less painfully than you learned them?
- Could you teach your children some things about people that would help them on their journey?
Guys, I ask these questions to get you to think about truly equipping your children for success in life. Whose responsibility is it to prepare your children for the future? In my reading of the Bible I have not found a verse that says, Thou shalt take thy children to the church to learn about God. Instead, I have found verses like:
These commandments that I give you today are to be upon 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 o your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates. Deuteronomy 6:6-9
Train up a child in the way he should go: even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6
As I see it, we can get some help from our churches and schools and even other sources, but the primary and ultimate responsibility for teaching and training children for all aspects of life is in the hands of the parents.
And the bulk of it sits squarely on the shoulders of fathers.
Read these verses:
And fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. Ephesians 6:4
Fathers, do not exasperate your children, that they may lose heart. Colossians 3:21
These verses summarily tell us that if we don’t give them discipline and instruction or fill their lives with criticism and chastisement they will be angry, frustrated and even lose heart. Men, we don’t want those things for our sons and daughters.
The answer then is to be personally involved in teaching them the things they need to be academically, socially, spiritually and physically well prepared as they move into adulthood.
Can I challenge you to make a special effort to teach your children this week?