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Discipleship Inside the Home

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Show Notes

I am joined on this episode by my good friend, Deric Thomas of Christ Fellowship in Gadsden, AL, as we offer a brief theological overview on what God, in His Word has called fathers to in the family. We also seek to provide some practical advice on how we shepherd the children in our homes and what ideas might work for you in your home.

Links and Resources

MaximizingYourCommute

Maximize Your Commute Home

I recently read a short article about creating “buffers” in our day in order to help maximize our effectiveness. It was helpful. Nothing deep or new to me, but the last one really grabbed my attention because it is something that I started doing a while back that really helped me lead my family better. The “buffer” was to use the time during your commute home from work to be silent, think, and unwind a bit in order to effectively engage your family when you arrive home. This is a great habit to get in to, especially if your job tends to be high stress.

I’m usually a bit more proactive than this, but the concept is the same. I use this time to try to calm my nerves from the work day and pray that God would prepare me to love and lead my family well when I get home. Most times I give my wife a call when I leave the office to see if there are any major issues I need to know about or that I need to deal with when I arrive. This gives me time to think and pray specifically about those issues and try to decide how best to deal with them in light of the Gospel.

As men, God has called us to love and lead our families in ways that go far beyond mere financial provision. Our day is not over when we leave the office, store, factory, ect. We don’t have the luxury of bringing home so much work or work related stress that we neglect our wives and children.

So men, let me encourage you to create this “buffer” in your life. Turn off the radio. Put down the cell phone. Switch off the task-related, problem-solving, vocational part of your mind. Pray that God would grant you the grace you need to love, lead, and enjoy your family. Use this time to think about how you can best accomplish your most important roles. The roles for which you are irreplaceable-husband and dad.

What other tips do you have for the rest of us that have helped you grow as a husband and father? Leave a comment and let us know.

How Do I Lead Family Worship?

Dads, we've been given a big task!

There are several questions when it comes to family worship and we will discuss some of them here. What’s not in question is the fact that the Bible lays the weight of pastoring the family and teaching them the Word of God squarely on the shoulders of the father.

And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. (Deuteronomy 6:6-9 ESV)

Here are a few of the questions I have heard (and wrestled with myself) about leading family worship in the home and what we are currently doing in our home. These are questions you and your wife should sit down and answer. Leading your family doesn’t mean you do it alone! Also, take it from me, beating yourself up because it isn’t going the way you thought it would or you missed a day or two will only lead to frustration! Read more

Tarps & Kiddie Pools

I have been having such a great Father’s Day week! My wife is going out of her way to do special things for me, my daughter has given me a card at least once a day this whole week (sometimes more), and my 3 year old son shows his affection by repeatedly trying to bloody my nose! As we have been going throughout the last two weeks or so, our family and I have had a lot of things going on. There have been a lot of situations and projects battling for my attention. Unfortunately I have found myself brushing my kids off a little more recently when they ask me to play with them. My response has been “Daddy just has to do a few more things before I can play”, or “Daddy’s really busy right now guys”. Then when I do get around to playing with them, it’s close to their bedtime or my body is there, but my mind is on what’s next on the list.

I can see how easily it would be for this kind of “busyness” to go on for a long time unchecked. By then your kids are so used to you telling them “no” that they just quit asking. I refuse to be that dad! This is where we as men need some help! Most of us are wired as doers, task finishers, project tamers, goal accomplishers, etc… And in being so we tend to have a bit of a one tracked mind, which works both for and against us. We need the support of our wives and other godly men that will hold us accountable and call us out when we are neglecting our kids. My wife does a great job at this. She is with them all the time, so she can tell when they are in need of more daddy time. This is one of the areas I would suggest you, as the leader of your home, ask your wife to help you in. I could overwhelm you with stats off how much better off kids are when the dad is not just there, but active and involved… But I won’t… I don’t have to… Deep down, you know it’s true and right anyway! You know how great it feels to see them smile just because you took the time to have a tea party, set up train tracks, or put a quilt on top of the couch cushions you so strategically placed in the hall that you could run, do a belly-flop, and slide all the way down the hall without so much as a scratch.

I am so glad that God gives us those little moments that serve as reminders that one of the reasons we were wired this way was so that we would cultivate our family too! I had several more things to do today at the house after an already long, hot day of work. My kids had been begging me to swim with them in their new kiddie pool their mom had picked up for them. I put them off a little while so I could attend to the “all-important” yard work. When I finally gave in, I placed a big tarp beside the pool to act as kind of a slip and slide. We all three had so much fun! I was able to relax and play with them all at the same time. That’s when God’s little reminder came to me that this is more important than any project list that I had been giving too much time and energy to.

We are called by God to shepherd, instruct, and disciple our children in the ways of the Lord. But they are just like other people in the world, they need to know you have their best interests at heart before they will really respond to what you try to teach them. If you don’t spend quality time with your kids, they will find someone who will and that person will own the influence in their lives. Dad, you are important!

Happy Father’s Day guys!