Dr. Tony Evans, pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, Texas, delivered a challenging Father’s Day sermon this year. Speaking on Joshua 24:14-15, Evans unpacked the declaration that Joshua made to serve the Lord regardless of what was happening in the culture around him. Evans said the men listening had a similar choice to make: Whether they would choose to serve God or choose to serve themselves. In our current cultural climate, the choice to serve God can look counter-cultural.
From Pastor Leonard Navarre:
MORE DADDY MORE!
This Sunday is Father’s Day. As we ponder this special day I want to draw our attention to a remarkable text found in the first book of the Bible in Genesis 49. Jacob has 12 sons. As he is preparing to depart this life he calls all his sons around his bedside and pronounces a blessing upon each one. Genesis 49 and verse 28 states, “He (that is Jacob) blessed them every one with the blessing appropriate to him”. Did you get that? He pronounces a blessing upon each son, words that would be just for that son.
Bill Glass, former all Pro football player for the Cleveland Browns and founder and Director of Bill Glass Prison ministries underlines and emphasizes the importance of Father’s pronouncing blessings upon their children ALL THROUGH THEIR LIVES. Bill states, “children need a father who speaks the words of love, hope and belonging in their lives.” He continues, “the future of your children and your children’s children and even their children depends upon it.” One my men in our congregation would phone his children EVERY DAY even though they were grown and say, I LOVE YOU. I THINK YOUR TERRIFIC and I’M GLAD YOUR ARE A PART OF OUR FAMILY! The man is down in heaven but his daughter told me, “oh, how I would love to hear my Dad say those things again. They encouraged and blessed me so much. I felt SO SPECIAL!”
Friends do you remember what Deuteronomy 7:9 states. Here it is, “The Lord your God is God. He is the faithful God keeping His covenant of love to thousands of generations for those who love him and keep his commandments.”
Dads we have the opportunity to touch many many generations by our actions toward our children. Dads here are 3 suggestions to impact your children and those generals that follow them.
1) TIME: Give your children your time. Time to talk. Time to listen. Time to encourage and bless your children. Whether it’s camping, playing games, going to special events, all help you by giving your children your time. They are interested in YOU not in your work, or your office or your friends. They need to be with YOU. So give them YOUR time. WHY? Because they really don’t want your money…they want YOU!
2) COACHING: By being involved with your children you are more aware of their interests, needs and of course what they are thinking and planning. Being with your children you can lead and guide. Carey Casey who is CEO of National Center for Fathering says that 27 million children in the United States don’t have a Father presence in the home. Did you hear that 27 million children?
This absence leads to higher rates of poverty, teen pregnancy, substance abuse, violent crime, depression, and ultimately loss of all hope. SO DAD’S WE ARE THE KEY to future generations moving out of all these problems and breaking those chains. SPEAK INTO THEIR LIVES. BUILD THEM UP!
Thirdly, CHARACTER! Dad’s we need to be consistent in living out our values and convictions. My son gave me a sign several years ago that reads, “Every Father should remember that one day his children will follow his example instead of his advice.” Your children are watching your EVERY action and they will follow YOU, probably not and of our lectures.
So, my friend, may we not only talk the talk we as Dad’s need to WALK THE WALK.
In Chicken Soup for the Father’s soul, John Trent wrote about a father who decided to take his children of a “date with Dad” every week. He had a 10 year old, a 9 year old and a 2 year old. He’d take the 10 and 9 year old every week and they would come home and brag about their “date with Dad”. The 2 year old said, why can’t I go? The Dad would explain, you’re only 2 and you need to be 3 before you can go. The 2 year old demanded, I’m 2 and half and I want to go, NOW.
As they put the food on the table at the restaurant he grabbed the 2 and half year old and said, You are mine and I’m glad. You are a winner and I’m proud of you. I love you and I think you are terrific. When the Dad tried to pull his hands away, the two year old said, “more Daddy, more”
Friends our children are calling out, “more time Daddy, more love Daddy, more exampling Daddy.”
Our Bible Boost for today is from Ephesians 6:4, “Father’s do not exasperate your children; instead bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” This Sunday is Father’s Day…Dad’ let take the whole family to church, have a picnic as a FAMILY! LOVE ON OUR FAMILIES! Families that do these things are blessed and strong, even to a thousand generations.
I am praying for you and your family.
Leonard, a Dad, Gramps and Great-granddad