"You WILL go to church." These are the words that I heard my father speak to me 19 years ago.
As I thanked God for my father yesterday, many past memories resurfaced. I grew up in a Christian home and was in church everytime the doors were opened. I enjoyed church and was blessed with wonderful Sunday School teachers and youth workers. However, one specific Sunday I had an out of town friend who was going to be coming through town during the church hour. I begged my father to let me say home so that I did not miss his visit. "You WILL go to church" was his final answer. I did go with tears flowing down my face in fear of missing the visit.
Looking back, I thank him for showing me the importance of church. A relationship with Christ far outweighs any relationship with a friend. (Oh and my friend waited on me to return home from church.)
Proverbs 22:6 "Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it."
Spankings...Ever receive these as a child?? I can only remember 2, but boy do I remember those!
My father was a gentle man, but when really I messed up, he really let me know! I thank God for a father who disciplined!
The "Silent Treatment"...get any of these?
One Friday night during my teenage years I was caught making poor choices. The only thing my dad said to me was "I didn't raise you like that." For several days he barely looked at me and didn't speak. I had crushed him. He had always been able to trust me and I had let him down. Again, I thank God for my father and the wise way he disciplined. This was much worse than any spanking could have felt.
Proverbs 13:24 "He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines him promptly."
And last but not least, I remember the love and support he has always given me. He never missed a beauty pagent, a football game where I cheered, a family vacation, or any other special event in my life. He always saw my fullest potential. A child desperately needs the love and support of a father and again I thank God for my father.
Pointing in the direction of Christ, disciplining, loving and supporting...sounds like our heavenly Father also. Maybe your children do not have a father who leads in this way, point them to Christ and He will be there Father in Heaven!
Psalm 68:5 "A father to the fatherless, a defender to the widows, is God in His holy dwelling place."