Happy Father’s Day
Several years ago, I had a bad experience with a dry cleaner. They messed up my shirts three separate times and left spots from cleaning fluid all over them. I was angry about it, so I huffed back into that dry cleaners with that third handful of messed shirts. I let that girl behind the counter know what I thought in no uncertain terms.
When I’d had my say, she politely said, “Yes, Sir. We’ll take care of this. By the way, Pastor Hammond, I enjoyed your sermon last Sunday.”
I wanted to crawl into a dark corner. It was awful. It was as though God rapped me on the head and said, “You have to watch that, Bud.”
That story provides a great reminder this Father’s Day that parents who want to train their children in the Word have to model the values they want their kids to live. If a brother and a sister have a squabble and they run off to their separate rooms to pout, teach them about forgiveness. Tell them, “You can’t do this. You don’t resolve conflict by ignoring it or going off and pouting. You have to forgive and not be resentful and bitter.”
After telling them this, turn around and live this same truth. Don’t let them see you and your wife a few days later end a knock-down, drag-out fight with your wife running off to the bedroom and you running out the front door. If you do, you’ve undermined the truth about forgiveness you were teaching your children. They’ll think: If mom and dad don’t need to talk it through, I don’t need to either.
This permeates every area of our lives. If you talk to your kids about having a cool spirit and not flying off the handle, don’t yell at the guy who cuts you off in traffic when you are driving the family to church. Your kids watch everything you do. Let what you teach your children be the values you live in your life.
Of course, we all make mistakes, and at some point, your kids will see it. When this happens, talk to your kids about it. They should know that you aren’t perfect, but the grace of God empowers you—and them—to grow and continue in your relationship with God. You are all striving together for the faith of the Gospel.
God has given us an important job as fathers: He has called us to lead our families. God has blessed each one of us and strengthened us to do just that and do it well.
Good fathers are a prized possession for their children, their spouses, and our society. Take time to honor your dad today and let him know how much you love him and appreciate him.
Happy Father’s Day!