Saturday, June 22, 2013

Men of The Father

There was time when children weren’t created to entertain us or to fill a void missing in our lives, they were meant to give dad a hand in the fields and help momma with the daily chores. A son was born into a home and the moment he learned to walk he was given a task. There was no such thing as an easy ride and every family member had a specific set of duties that had to be done before sun down. As our lives moved from plowing the fields to working the big machines to today’s high tech land of iGadgets, so did our roles at home. Dad still gets up and goes to work every morning, the difference is that he spends his days with strangers and his nights juggling family life. Today’s fathers are a new breed unlike any the world has ever seen before.

The first house Mandy and I moved into had a kitchen fit for one. It was designed to fit mom only. For century’s Dad’s didn’t belong in the kitchen any more than mom belonged underneath an old clunker covered in axle grease, so there wasn’t a need for a kitchen built for two. Those were the days when Father Knew Best and Ward Cleaver always had a hot meal waiting for him after pulling Beaver out of another mess. Things changed of course. A 2013 marriage isn’t built around dad being the boss of the house or ruling with an iron fist. Mom and Dad are a team tackling everything from the daily menu to their children’s choice in music. Together they are a force to be reckoned with.

Fathers of this generation are more involved in their children’s lives than their fathers and grandfathers ever knew possible. Maybe it’s because there’s more to be involved in. Growing up I got out of bed, went to school, came home, played outside, slept, and repeated the routine for months at a time. Today there’s gymnastics, karate, soccer camp, and dance practice. We barely learn English before Dora starts teaching us Spanish. Technology is taking over to the point where rather than talk to the person next to us, we sit in silence and text them. In case you haven’t noticed, our Bibles are being replaced by computer screens. Why should we have to remember to bring the real thing, when at the tip of our fingers we can pull up five different translations, a commentary on each chapter, and tell a million people our favorite verse within seconds? Nowhere on that Little House On The Prairie did Charles Ingalls come across internet predators, cyber bullies, school shootings, drug dealers setting up shop next door, and he certainly never had to explain why Timmy has two moms and no dad.

Admittedly at times we still seem to revert back to our caveman roots, but if you look around what you will find in between the dead beat dads and no-show fathers so often highlighted on the day’s news are men that cherish their families more than anything in the world. Men that take time to get involved in every aspect of the lives of their families, not because they have grown soft as a species, but because they understand that in order to fulfill God’s command that they should lead their families to heaven…they must be an active participant in it.

As a father trying to raise a family in a world that starts and ends wars overnight and seems to have forgotten its founding principles just as quickly, I know that it’s only through our belief in God and the teachings of his son Jesus Christ that all things are possible. So today, Father’s Day, I’d like to send a special thank you to all those dads that inspire me and so many others to be better men and to say that no matter what age we live in….THE FATHER will always know best.