There are 17 days until Father’s Day. Today’s Quote:
Father’s Day is hopefully a time when the culture says, ‘This is our moment to look at who our men and boys are.’ — Michael Gurian
Who is/was your Dad? Hopefully someone you love and respect, someone who invested himself in your life in a positive way. If he was unable or unwilling to be that positive role model, how have you coped, adjusted and moved on?
IMHO, Fathers can (and typically do) leave a lasting impression which can carry forward for more than one generation. Hopefully, he instilled a favorable legacy, and if not, you can overcome it, adjust and improve your parenting skills and commitment.
God wants us to break the chains of the past and walk forward in His grace and guidance. Throughout the bible we are instructed on developing strong relationships, and our ability to shape and guide the next generation is of paramount responsibility. We need not be perfect (I am certainly far from it) but we need to commit to give it our utmost effort. God can take care of the gaps, hiccups, mistakes and disappointments.
- Proverbs 23:24, (NLV) “I guide you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths. When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble. Hold on to instruction, do not let it go; guard it well, for it is your life.“
- Proverbs 4:11-13, (NIV) “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.” (James 1:5, NIV)
- Hebrews 12:9-10 Living Bible (TLB) “Since we respect our fathers here on earth, though they punish us, should we not all the more cheerfully submit to God’s training so that we can begin really to live? Our earthly fathers trained us for a few brief years, doing the best for us that they knew how, but God’s correction is always right and for our best good, that we may share his holiness.”
- Malachi 4:5-6 Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC) “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes. And he shall turn and reconcile the hearts of the [estranged] fathers to the [ungodly] children, and the hearts of the [rebellious] children to [the piety of] their fathers [a reconciliation produced by repentance of the ungodly], lest I come and smite the land with a curse and a ban of utter destruction.“
I was blessed to have awesome, God appointed parents. My Dad and Mom were super committed to their family, and were willing to sacrifice personal wants to build a strong family. Were they perfect? Of course not. Did they do more than “show up”? Every day.
My parents have gone home to be with the Lord in Heaven and I miss them. Their legacy shines through me to my children, and my wife and I depend completely on God to “fix our mistakes” and keep our children from suffering when we drop the ball.
As we move closer to “Father’s Day” you may want to evaluate your relationship with your parents with the objective of repentance, repair, and resolution like we see in Malachi 4:5-6. What do your children know of your parents? Do they enjoy a healthy relationship with their grandparents (if so, praise God for His provision) or do they miss out on that due to estrangement between you and your parents?
I am no expert on relationships, but there are plenty of folks you can talk to if you’re hurting over a broken relationship beginning with your pastor or spiritual advisor.
Some additional resources you may want to consider from other blogs and such:
[Children] ought to see in their human father a reflection—albeit imperfect—of the heavenly Father in his strength and tenderness, in his wrath and mercy, in his exaltation and condescension, in his surpassing wisdom and patient guidance. The task of every human father is to be for his children an image of the Father in heaven.— John Piper