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Thursday
Jun082017

A Message to Fathers

By: Donna Martin

While surfing the net I came across some interesting Special Days in June.   Here are just a few of those days:  June 1 – Dare Day, June 2 -National Doughnut Day, June 5 - Hot Air Balloon Day, June 6 – D-Day WWII, June 7 – National Chocolate Ice Cream Day, June 10 – Iced Tea Day, June 19 National Kissing Day, and June 26 – Forgiveness Day! 

Of course, probably the most important day to celebrate in June is Father’s Day!  I surfed the net a little more and discovered that the word “father” is mentioned 1,082 times in the Bible (NIV version).  Many of those times are referring to God as our father.  Psalm 68:5 tells us that God is “a father to the fatherless.”  If God promises to be a father to us, then a father must be something that we all need.  Fathers are indeed important to families.

Not only has God demonstrated the characteristics of a good father, but the Bible has given instructions to help men know how to be a good father.   Let’s look at some of those verses.

A father is instructed to teach his children about God and the Bible every day.   Deuteronomy 6:6-7 tells us, “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.”  Psalm 78:3 tells men to pass the truths about God down from generation to generation so that our children and their children would put their trust in God.  “What we have heard and known what our fathers have told us, we will not hide them from their children we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he had done.  He decreed statues for Jacob and established the law in Israel, which he commands our forefathers to teach their children, so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children.  Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands.”  Proverbs 22:6 instructs us to “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.”

A father is also instructed to discipline his children.  When we think of discipline the word punishment comes to mind.  That is one definition of discipline; however, Merriam-Webster also defines discipline as “training that corrects, molds, or perfects the mental faculties or moral character.”  Proverbs 23 says, “Do not withhold discipline from a child.”  Proverbs 29:17 tells us “Discipline your son, and he will give you peace; he will bring delight to your soul.”  Of course the discipline should be given in love.  Hebrews 12:4-11 tells us that God, our heavenly father, disciplines us because he loves us. Verses 11 states, “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful.  Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” Colossians 3:21 instructs fathers with these words, “Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.” And Ephesians 6:4 says, “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.”  A father’s love is very powerful and a father should express his love for his child just as God expresses his love to us.  “As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him.” (Psalm 103:13)

One of the best ways that a father can love his children is by loving their mother.  Growing up in a home where love is displayed between a mother and father is so important to the well being and development of a child.  Ephesians 5:25 says, “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.”

Being a father can be challenging.  Sometimes a dad feels disrespected, forgotten, ignored, and unappreciated.  A dad may do everything right and still be the father of a child who is rebellious.  If this happens to you, do not be discouraged.  The time and energy you have devoted to your child will pay off eventually.  Look at the story of the prodigal son.  His father never gave up on him.  Never give up on you children.  Keep praying, keep loving, and keep living a life devoted to Christ.  Your prayers don’t stop when you die.  Your influence will outlive you.  Make sure it is a Godly influence.

The Martins are available to present “Happy Together” Marriage Enrichment Events for churches and organizations.  To schedule an event call Michael at 940-735-1515. They are certified “Prepare/Enrich” Facilitators and are available to work with couples on an individual basis using the “Prepare/Enrich Assessment.”  They publish a weekly “Happy Together” Blog about family and marriage issues.  You can order copies of their new books Dancing With Death and 366 Tidbits We Have Learned in 14,610 Days of Marriage, read, and subscribe to their “Happy Together” Blog by logging onto the Martin’s website at www.happytogethermarriages.com.

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