Tag Archives: character

Father Hunger [Book Review]

Just how important is fatherhood anyway? Our culture has no answer as it can’t think of one good reason for fatherhood beyond the biological one. For that matter, many fathers can’t add any more items to the list. Shall we listen to our culture? I’m not sure what our listless age has to commend to itself to be our guide. God, as the Master Designer, is left out of our thinking and the consequences are horrific. That’s where one of the most incredible books on fathers I have ever read comes into play. “Father Hunger” by Douglas Wilson is profound and greatly impacted me. Every page was like the hard steel blades of the plow tilling through the soil of my heart.

What Mr. Wilson was able to accomplish in this volume is rarely done. When the subtitle proclaims “Why God calls men to love and lead their families”, the book actually delivers on the “why.” Few books can give us the big picture and get especially practical as well. As an avid reader, it’s my opinion that most authors can give us only one or the other. Mr. Wilson, with verve, skill, and a pastoral heart actually pulls it off.

With deftness he upholds the essential equality of men and women while showing that the Lord, again the Master Designer, has assigned men and women different roles. That will probably keep this book off the New York Times Bestseller List, but it will have the smile of Heaven for its Biblical faithfulness. God is Father, so do you imagine in His design fathers would have a non-essential role? Ladies, don’t panic—Mr. Wilson never gives men power to be selfish brats, just power to love and be unselfish and sacrifice himself for his family. Listen to this incredible statement on men taking responsibility: “… to take on a lifetime of sacrifice and hard work. A man who takes a woman to the altar is going there to die to himself. But that is all right because it is not good for man to be alone.”

He looks at our country and where it is today and sees the absent father as the biggest culprit for the mess we are in. From fathers who provide the seed for a child and vanish to the fathers who live at the same address and mostly do their own thing in life, we have a generation of absentee fathers. The Lord designed everyone to need a father. A father’s loving hand is needed in the life of every child. He says, “Your actual pursuits are a running scoreboard. They reveal what you actually prize.” Are you challenged here? I am.

He shows how feminism, or the dire warnings of overpopulation, or the design of the welfare system, or the plea for gay marriage are all direct attacks on fatherhood. It also a direct attack on what every one of us needs to thrive as God intended. Statistics on everything from crime to education are given. The jury is in and the verdict says that homes without fathers are destroying children today. Without a Dad they will much more likely be a school dropout or be in prison. Also, the worst we see out of men comes from not encouraging them to settle down, accept responsibility, and protect their family.   He shows how God is masculine (not male) and how masculinity (defined with care) is needed all around.

There’s so much more, but this review is getting ridiculously long. For the practical side, the chapter “Some Father Mechanics” is worth the price of the book alone. I saw my lack all over its pages. Thank you Mr. Wilson. If no one else needed your book, I did.

Article by Jimmy Reagan

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My Name Is…

Everyone has TWO names: Who YOU think you are and who OTHERS say you are …

It has always been said that how you are PERCEIVED is how you are eventually RECEIVED. What does that mean you ask? Simply put, if someone thinks you are a mean person, they will treat you like a mean person. If someone thinks you to be positive and fun, more than likely you will have quite a few more friends than someone who isn’t.

So often we dig ourselves into man-made holes and when we fall into them we blame everyone but ourselves. I love what Psalm 7:15 says:

He made a pit, and digged it, and is fallen into the ditch which he made.

Honestly, we as Christians do some pretty stupid things sometimes. The problem that we fail to comprehend is that every action we perform places a mark upon us for EVERYONE to see. People today, especially teenagers, mope around wondering why people view them in the light that they do — Poor choices will result in unfavorable consequences. On the other hand, do right and live right, and a POSITIVE mark is placed on your forehead (figuratively speaking of course) for everyone to see! The best part of all this? YOU get to choose how people PERCEIVE you! Look at this passage from Proverbs 22:

A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold. – Proverbs 22:1

What an opportunity! We get to pick how and what we are going to be known as. Think right now of someone you think that is a liar … Now think of someone who you think is honest. Why did you pick the people you picked? It is because they gave you a reason! They picked their “name” and allowed you to perceive them that way.

Everyone has seen those, “Hello, my name is…” stickers right? Let’s imagine that you took a blank one and stuck it on your forehead and gave 10 people who you know fairly well a marker. Their job was to write how they perceived you on your sticker … What do you think it would say when they finished and you pulled it off? The choice is yours ….

TAKE AWAYS

  • Our actions formulate the opinions that others have towards us
  • Once someone has made their mind up, it’s hard to change it
  • YOU ultimately get to choose how you are known and how you will be remembered

 

Article by Kevin Crozier

@kevcrozier

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An Honest Campaign

As we fast approach Election Day it is almost certain that you can expect a last push for your vote. Even before now the advertising has overwhelmed the public with campaign signs on every corner and commercials on the radio and television. And as we draw nearer to the final day in which the last person standing will be the one with the most votes, desperation and mud-slinging has kicked into high-gear as candidates use toxic arsenal to boost their appeal.

You might say that all is fair in love, war and politics, but how far is too far? It is one thing to inform the public of a candidate’s position, but it is an entirely different game of politics when one minces words and generates deception. What do these acts of malicious intent say about the character of those who endorse them, and how should we as the public respond? The Bible as God’s word gives time-tested instruction on how we should conduct ourselves; and it has much to say about an honest campaign.

David was a young man when he was anointed to be the true king of Israel, and yet he waited patiently for some time before finally assuming the throne. In his youth, he was employed by King Saul to fight against the Philistine giant, Goliath, and in the name of the Lord he won the battle – and the favor of the people of Israel (1 Samuel 17:45-51; 18:6-7). The king, jealous of the praise David received and paranoid that he would take over the kingdom, made several attempts to have David killed because he threatened his position on the throne. And while he had many opportunities to avenge himself, David never lifted a finger against his king nor attempted to damage his reputation (1 Samuel 24:1-13). For his integrity and obedience, David was rewarded as king over Israel after God had removed Saul from the throne, for he was truly a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22).

The character demonstrated by young David, eager to lead his people in victory and righteousness, displays the kind of integrity we should look for in potential future leaders. The Bible says, “It is an abomination to kings to do evil, for the throne is established by righteousness” (Proverbs 16:12). As Christians we have a duty to seek leaders of honor and integrity, and vote for those who revere God and promote Christian principles. It is leaders such as these that run an honest campaign, and their character proves they will conduct the affairs of the public with sincerity and respect.

When the actions of a man portray him with inconsiderate lips and a perverse character, the old adage is often applied – “what you see is what you get”. Those who are desperate for supremacy and conduct themselves in deceitfulness and slander may have temporary success, but in the end will not be rewarded. The Bible says, “He who has a crooked mind finds no good, and he who is perverted in his language falls into evil” (Proverbs 17:20), for “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people” (Proverbs 14:34).

As you go to the polls and cast your ballot, keep in mind the integrity of those who seek election; for the character displayed during their campaign reveals much about the office they ask to hold. “Remove the impurities from the silver, and out comes material for the silversmith” (Proverbs 25:4).

I always enjoy hearing from my readers. Write me at michael@michaelwaits.com or follow me at twitter.com/michaelwaits.

Article by Michael Waits

@michaelwaits

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