I had a guy tell me a while back, in reference to leading his family, ‘There’s too much to remember’. As far as I can tell, the wife leads the family spiritually and does almost all of the child rearing. So what do you think he did about this situation? Nothing. Actually, not nothing. He abdicated himself. He was told the truth about what God expects from us as men and he said it was too much for him to handle, thereby shirking his responsibilities off on his wife. So instead of pressing into God for wisdom, strength, grace, and mercy and instead of seeking godly men to help him with this task… he, like a lot of Christian men… gave up.
I believe the problem lies in a couple of areas for men who call themselves followers of Christ yet show no interest in leading their families as the Bible says we are supposed to.
- They are never confronted with the full truth of what God has called them to as a believer, husband, father, church leader. No one has ever sat them down and said “Grow up!” This culture as well as the church has allowed “men” to remain overgrown boys. That leads to this Peter Pan syndrome, that America is plagued with, where men, married or single, think only of themselves, their toys, and what pleases them most. I know. I was one of them. By God’s grace I am continuing to rise above that selfish, self-centered, tiring lifestyle that I thought was so much fun (lets face it even when you get what you want all the time, it’s still empty). So part of the problem is a lack of knowledge. We have lost the art of mentoring in the church today.
- They are told and shown from the Scriptures what God’s expectations are and never really consider the weight that brings or they consider it too high a price. They are told we are to love our wives as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her (Eph 5:25). That statement alone is enough to blow your mind! They are told and shown that it is our responsibility (not our wife’s, not the church’s, not the school’s) to teach the Word to our children (Deut 4:10, 6:7, 11:19). Side note: They are not “our” children to do with as we please. They belong to God and He has seen fit to allow us to be a steward over their lives and to raise them the way He says we are to raise them. So you end up with men, when it comes to their families, who are either lazy or apathetic.
Yes it’s a huge task. Yes it’s hard sometimes. But, we’re men! We have no trouble finding the strength to do the other things we really want to do. If we want to learn a new sport, hobby, job, etc., we pour a ton of time, energy and money into it so we can be the best at it that as possible. Why do we not treat our families (of infinitely greater value) the same way. Why do we not spend time, energy, and resources on learning how we can love our wives better or how do we go about teaching our kids the Word and that Jesus loves them more than they will ever know? A lot of times we are like Jonah. We see the task, don’t like the terms and bolt the other way. Jonah bore the weight of his disobedience, but sadly if we don’t do something about our families, they will be the ones to suffer because we didn’t think they were worth the price.
Either live your life on purpose, or life will live you. Don’t just react to things that happen. See the things you want to happen in your family, pray that God grant you wisdom, strength, and grace… and then MAKE IT HAPPEN!
You don’t have to be a theologian to read the Bible to your kids. You don’t have to be Billy Grahm to pray with your wife. You do need to read your Bible and pray (feed yourself) so you will have something to feed them with. Everyone runs into a dry season where you’re not focusing on your walk with God and living for Him. We all have times when we lose the battle to selfishness. The question is do we struggle with that or do we just roll over? Repent and get back to what you know is right! Worship God, live for Him and enjoy the family He has blessed you with.