By Paul Bawden
A Spanish story tells of an estranged father and son. The father searched for months for his son, who had run away. In a last desperate effort to find him, the father put the following ad in a Madrid newspaper:
“Dear Paco, meet me in front of this newspaper office at noon on Saturday. All is forgiven. I love you. Your father.” On Saturday eight hundred Pacos showed up. All wanted forgiveness and love from their father.
Fatherhood poverty is a major force behind many of the disturbing problems that plague our country today. Bill Brown writes that crime and juvenile delinquency, premature sexuality and out of wed-lock births to teenagers, deteriorating educational achievement, even child sex-role conflicts and identity struggles can be attributed many times to a lack of the father’s balanced influence on a child’s life.
Father poverty, according to Eickhoff, undermines the security of the child, and the child’s ability to face the unknown or great excitement with that optimistic confidence of a safe landing natural to the well fathered child. Certainly, both father and mother are needed in the family, as father brings his love, security, and stability, while the mother adds her love, nurture, support, and direction. Both father and mother are a team, working together, to make the family thrive as God intends.
In this month of June when dads are honored, I want you to know how much you are appreciated, but also how much you are needed in your family, which is contrary to some thinking today.
Being a dad, and now a granddad, I know that dads have many things to do. But make your family your top priority. Don’t be a renegade dad, with your children wondering where’s dad when your vital presence is needed in your family, as your children miss out on your words of encouragement and positive influence. Statistics show that the family where the father is present and carries out servant leadership that family will thrive.
Your person, dad, and time is what your wife and children need. Play with your children when they are younger. Attend their activities as they grow older. Praise your children. Listen to your children. Pray for your children. Provide loving leadership for your children. Love and serve your wife. Above all, provide your children a lasting spiritual basis upon which to build their lives. Jesus Christ is that foundation. I trust that you know Him personally through faith, and you are seeking to lead your family in the paths of righteousness. Read John 3:16 and Ephesians 6:4 in the Bible. Happy Father’s Day!!
You might like to watch, Hero Tips: Hero To Your Kids – Josh McDowell – YouTube.
Paul Bawden is married and served in the pastoral ministry for 45 years, retiring in 2011. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a B.A. in Speech and attended Dallas Theological Seminary, receiving a Master of Theology. He has taken counseling courses at Trinity Evangelical Seminary in Deerfield, Illinois. Paul is a lifetime member of the Evangelical Free Church of America, as well as being a member of Interim Pastor Ministries (IPM), which serves churches during their time of transition in searching for a new pastor. He writes for Union Gospel Press, as well as being a volunteer writer for GotQuestions.org. Paul likes to write, read, bike, and work in the yard. The Bawdens have had the privilege to travel to Mexico and Romania on mission trips and visited various countries in Europe.
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