June 22, 2020 - Dads
When I woke up this morning I was still celebrating Father's Day. One of the greatest joys in life for me is being a father. It provides a man the opportunity to love someone more than he loves himself. It also allows you to be someone's hero. I pray that all dads had a wonderful, safe celebration on Sunday, June 21, 2020. It was different from the former celebrations, but we have learned during covid-19 to adjust and modify our behaviors and activities. We could not meet with large crowds, but we were creative in holding our own small group celebrations. It was exciting and fun. It is always a wonderful feeling spending time with your children or at least it should be.
I often think of my dad, for he was my hero. He will always be remembered for his wisdom, work ethic, creativity, jovial spirit, family values, fervent prayers and love for God and family. My dad was not perfect, but he lived in such way that we saw him as our role model. I only say this because our children see something in each of us that drives them to become who they are or will become.
Some fathers have a great disdain for changing pampers and diapers, but I will always remember changing the babies and establishing a bond with them at an early age. To see your children grow up before your own eyes is something to behold. Can you remember when they first learned how to ride a bike or their first day riding a school bus to kindergarten? These were some wonderful times in the life of a father. You have the opportunity to observe them in sports, concerts, and other activities. I am a proud dad.
Can you remember the day they graduated from high school or started a career? Observing your children mature and become adults is exciting, but at the same time a little frightening. To see them grow up so fast and have to go out and face the world causes a little anxiety. When your child is ready to move away from home, there are mixed feelings, but we know they must leave us at some point. Helping them maneuver through some of the challenges of life is rewarding and fulfilling.
As I thought about the great fathers in the Bible, I reminded myself that most of them had their faults. That leads me to my next point that the most important father figure in the Bible is God the Father. With that being said, men are called to imitate God. He is a Father who has all of the characteristics of a role model father. He is loving, kind, patient, wise and most of all forgiving. He understands us better than anyone else, but he also calls us to be the heads of our house-holds.
The apostle Paul in Ephesians 6:4 says, "And you fathers are not to provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord." What this simply says is that a father is not to make their children angry, scornful, resentful, discouraged, and bitter. It is our responsibility to bring our children up in such a way that it is pleasing to God. We are to spend time training and teaching our children to live righteous lives.
May I remind us that our children are a blessing from the Lord. Even in this time of so much violence, uncertainty, immorality and wickedness, we have a responsibility to bring our children up in such a way that they will have a positive impact on society. God is looking for more spiritual fathers, so I admonish all fathers to get on board. There is no better time than now to establish that bond that will cause you to be a very proud father.
"Train up a child the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:6
Not a sermon, just a thought!
Robert Earl Slade, Pastor