Two years ago I don’t think I could have envisioned what a joy it is to be a Father. Yes, it is hard and even frustrating at times, but children are an incredible blessing and Steph and I praise God every day for entrusting us with Elizabeth and Anna. As you might have expected, I’ve learned a lot about what it means to be a Father. Perhaps the most important lesson for me concerns responsibility – that we are responsible (along with our wives) to train our children in the ways of the Lord.
The Bible teaches, “Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts” (Psalm 145:3-4). In the family, it is critically important for Fathers to provide spiritual leadership and do this very thing – commend the works of God to their children. Our children need to know that there is a God who is mighty to save. They need to know that God sent His Son Jesus Christ to redeem all who put their faith and trust in Him. Our children need to know that their sins can be forgiven when they repent and turn to Christ.
Let me challenge you Christian Fathers – are you training up your children in the way they should go (Proverbs 22:6)? Are you bringing them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4)? Are you using every opportunity to teach them about the greatness of God and the saving power of Jesus (Deuteronomy 6:7)? One day I will stand before God and give an account for how I raised my children, and you will too. Will we be able to say that we did everything we could to pass on what God entrusted to us? Or will we be forced to say we failed to deliver this most important message?
The best thing that parents can do for their children is to expose them to the Scriptures and then pray for the seed of God’s Word takes root in the child’s heart. Many Christian parents think that this is only done in our churches. And yes, our children should be taught in church, but the home is the best place to teach your children about Christ. Think of how much time your children spend at home as compared to church. Think about the value of spending just 15 minutes a day reading the Bible to your children. I know you love your children and therefore, I want to challenge you to make time to teach them about Christ.
As I said before, it is a great joy and a delight to be a Father. But it’s also a tremendous responsibility. Not only do you have to make sure there is bread on the table, but you also have to make sure your children are receiving the spiritual nourishment they so desperately need. Father’s, let’s make sure we don’t short our children in this regard.
Happy Father’s Day!