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Thoughts on Father’s Day (06/19/2011)
From: T.M. Schoewe

We don’t know whether famous comedian Rodney Dangerfield had a good father or not. One of his signature lines was two words

“No Respect!”

One of the aspects of life in the U.S.A. that we fear is the growing concern or lack of respect toward the concept of fatherhood, whereby we mean not just the concept of siring a child but raising, teaching, supporting and disciplining a child to adulthood.

It is interesting to note Mother’s Day was started by Anna Jarvis from West Virginia who wanted her spectacular mother to be respected along with other moms by an annual observance. It finally caught fire and in 1914 Pres. Wilson set aside the second Sunday of May to celebrate Mothers. A woman in Spokane, Washington had an incredible dad and wanted dads to be acknowledged too. Words reached the Whitehouse and President Wilson made a lot of noise about it but in the end did nothing. It took another fifty plus years. In 1972 Pres. Nixon signed legislation designating the third Sunday in June as Father’s Day.

People in the greeting card business will tell you that the ratio of Mother’s Day cards bought and Father’s Day cards sent is about eight 8:1. We think the answer is that Americans just do not appreciate fatherhood enough. No Respect!

God has wired women for relationships, especially for those children who for nine months lived within them. Although the umbilical cord is cut there seems to be an invisible tether to her kids, physically, emotionally, spiritually. Fathers do not have that same kind of tie. FATHERS NEED TO CHOOSE to be in a relationship with their kids, and some men never get to that point.

Society has graded women on beauty, first of all on looks. While young men are graded on strength to get respect. “To be a man you have to look strong.” That’s one huge reason why we need fathers to show how boys and young men can be strong without fists and weapons; to show how to be strong in self control, not losing one’s temper but letting go.

Interestingly, the wisest words on family relationships were written by someone who

never married nor had kids. Would you want to read a book on parenting by somebody who was never a parent? Yet this fellow, St. Paul, wrote some of the wisest but shortest words on the dynamics that need to happen for a stable and healthy home.

No matter what kind of house you come from, what matters is what you choose to put yourself into. First, can you see how important this is for you and me who are dads? We have a God who calls Himself “Father!” If we are crummy dads the example we provide leaves painful memories and any concept of God as our Father will not appeal to them.

Look at Ephesians Chapter 6 and what Paul had to say about what things are to go on in your home. “Children obey your parents in the Lord for this is right.” Just do it! Not once in a while. Obey always. Why? Because God says so, and because it is right.

Notice too what an unusual word FATHER is to be used for GOD! When someone is your father it means that person initiated your life. God the Father, Who began all life, with His “let there be” gave you the power to begin life in your wife. That is, physical life and spiritual life is given you by His Son’s obedience, death and resurrection, thereby declaring you eligible to be part of His heavenly family. That gift to you incites us to think about our relationships. We need to pay attention because He is the designer, builder, guide and power source! Here sadly is where our culture falls short!

Many men do the easy thing and say “child rearing is women’s work!” Here sadly is where our culture falls short! Fathers need to go first! Of course you should always be there to feed, to clothe, to encourage, to clap and cheer, and show approval and appreciation. But remember to “Bring them up in the training and the instructions of the Lord” (Eph. Ch.6 v 4). By nature your kids can drain a bottle of milk without training in the first hours of their life but they do not know anything about the Lord from birth. Take care to see that the Word of the Lord gets into your kids brains. Next comes training. See that your children are disciplined, trained. Training refers to peoples’ actions, how they use their knowledge. Also, do not exasperate your children. Two ways you can make your children angry, either by overdoing or limiting your leadership role. So, take a middle road. Never do a reverse which is to just “neglect your children.”

Some of you have had great dads! Thank that man for his gifts to you. Thank him today, thank him every day! Some of you have flawed dads who aren’t around for you. Thank God for what you do have and trust in Him to fill the gaps in other ways. Finally, some of you have had no daddy at all. But one thing you do know is that you do have a Father in heaven to compensate for your missing dad. Try to look to a grandfather or uncle who might be there for you or maybe a friend or neighbor who can step in. Above all, choose to be a godly person yourself.

P.S. You don’t always have to give Dad a Father’s Day necktie. Better that you give your thanks to him and preserve those family ties. Happy Father’s Day.



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