Okay, what did you really think when I encouraged you to have a consistent bedtime/wakeup time every day? Crazy? Extreme? Why would I suggest such a thing?
The answer: Because consistent bedtime/wakeup time is one of the greatest needs in a family. Often Dad is the one who sinks his family’s ship. Mom is desperately trying to get things done, but Dad throws marbles in the cookie batter.
Once bedtime/wakeup time is set, so many other things will fall into place. Simple. Easy. Seriously, you can do it. Try me on this. It is amazing. Be a hero in your family, not a ____.
I’ve heard from some dads who have had the courage to step up and do it. I have a cow horn on my desk I blow for such occasions. Good going, guys. You can show the rest how easy it is.
Here is what one dad wrote. Is this cool or what?
“BT/WT has almost become a habit now. I start to get tired at the same time every night and am normally awake before my alarm now. Thank you. I have noticed a difference in how I well feel and my attitude and thinking throughout the day.”
When I see guys “step-up” like this, I am SO encouraged.
“Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong” (1 Corinthians 16:13).
Recently, one of the family attended a funeral visitation. During that time they had opportunity to speak with the grieving widow. She said she was doing quite well, but went on to say, “The hardest thing through all of this is: who is going to love me?” She said that she knew God and her children loved her, but what would take the place of her husband’s love?
I admire that man who so obviously loved his wife. What a heartbreaking reminder his widow’s words are of the need for a wife to be loved. How many wives don’t feel loved even though they have a husband? May we be the men that God has called us to be in loving our wives so that they feel it.
“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it” (Ephesians 5:25).
“Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1). What an incredible request for Paul to make of the Corinthians. He was confident that his example in following Christ would bear good fruit. Paul said something similar to the Philippians and the Thessalonians so his challenge to the Corinthians was not isolated.
Imagine with me for a moment: what if all pastors challenged their people like that? What would their church be like? Good or not so good? On fire sharing Christ? In the Word every day? What would the families be like? Children obeying their parents? All the children saved and reading the Word every day? Good, solid, respectful, happy?
Whoa, now take it a step further. Dads, what would the fruit be in our children’s lives if they followed our example? I ask not to put a guilt trip on anyone, but that we understand the weight of our example in the home. We will all fall short, just as Paul did in actuality. However, daily may we seek our Lord Jesus–to love and submit to Him. As He lives through us, we can be confident of the example set before our family.
“But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof” (Romans 13:14).
When you think of things in terms of cost, may I encourage you not to think in terms of dollars, think time. We can always get more money, but we can never get more time. Do you value your time? Do you use it as if it were a non-renewable commodity?
“He becometh poor that dealeth with a slack hand: but the hand of the diligent maketh rich” (Proverbs 10:4).
Decisions — we make hundreds of them each day. How blessed we are with freedom that allows us to make our own decisions.
Freedom might be best defined by what it cost to acquire it and what is done with it. Our freedom was expensive. It was bought by blood – the blood of servicemen and service women and the most precious blood of all, the blood Jesus Christ.
Are we using our freedom to do what we want or to do what we ought?
What will we have to show for our freedom when we stand before the Lord one day?
“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not” (1 Corinthians 10:23).
Raising godly children is a difficult, full-time job. It takes a great deal of time and effort. Will your future daughter-in-law be able to stay home with the children, or will she have to work full time? Will she want to homeschool the children?
The answer to those questions will likely be determined by how you raise your son and by the values you impress on his life. This affects the type of woman he is attracted to for his wife. In addition, it has much to do with the type of leadership he provides for his home. We must purpose to instill in our sons the desire to have their wives home nurturing their children. Now is the time to be working with our sons and developing them according to God’s Word and His leading. (excerpt from Preparing Sons to Provide for a Single Income Family)
“Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD” (Proverbs 18:22),
New Zealand passed a new law that designates the Whanganui River, the country’s third-longest river, a legal person. That means the Whanganui has rights such as owning property, incurring debts and even petitioning the courts. We can be sure that rational, intelligent people made this decision, but for what possible purpose? It was done with the hope of preventing environmental damage to the river. A similar legal action has been carried out in India for the Ganges and Yamuna rivers.
History repeats itself as mankind struggles to place value where real value is due.
There have been times when basic human rights were denied:
The Jews in Nazi Germany,
African Americans in slavery in the United States
Now, babies in the womb.
“For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent” (1 Corinthians 1:18-19).
Twelve leaders. – Just like us.
“And Moses by the commandment of the Lord sent them from the wilderness of Paran: all those men were heads of the children of Israel” (Numbers 13:3).
All saw the same things. – We have equal opportunity to be used of the Lord.
“So they went up, and searched the land from the wilderness of Zin unto Rehob, as men come to Hamath” (Numbers 13:21).
Two trusted in their God, but ten were afraid. – What will we choose?
“And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it. But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we” (Numbers 13:30-31).
There are always dissenting voices to listen to. Victory belongs to those who will trust and obey.
Possibly one solution for bored children is to let them watch movies or TV and play video games or sports. I didn’t say these were good solutions, merely possibilities. Based on popularity, however, it appears that these solutions rank at the top of the list.
Depending on our goals for our children, we can take a hint from God’s provision for Adam in the Garden as to a cure for boredom. “And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it” (Genesis 2:15). Purposeful work is needful for each of us. If we are discipling children to be adults, then might we want to train and guide them with that end in mind?
Might the popular solutions for boredom be the reason why our nation is plagued with entertainment addicts?
What are your goals for your children? How you guide them should not be based on popular choices or even their preferences but their ultimate good. That will be consistent with God’s direction.
“Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy” (Ezekiel 16:49).
At a recent conference Teri and I were sharing about how critical it is to establish peace and order in the home. One dad turned to his wife and whispered to her, “Honey, that sounds like a really good system, but I love the way our home is running, so let’s just stay with what we have.” She smiled and whispered back, “Babe, we’re doing their system!”
“Let all things be done decently and in order” (1 Corinthians 14:40).