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Religion


Men Wanted: Part 3

By Pastor Phillip Howle
web posted April 10, 2013

RELIGION – We looked last week at men setting the vision of the family. Now having a grand vision can be great! Politicians love to offer hope and change. They then give great speeches that can cause frustration with status quo and cause people to work to get them elected so that all the hope and change can occur. Then sadly, the electorate then finds out that that the big vision was hot air. Their man lacked the direction and the plan to get anything done.
 
Men, last week maybe you started to see the kinds of values and priorities you desire in your family. This is good, but now this week we are going to have to set the direction and make the plan to bring this vision to fruition. Jesus spoke of the need for concrete plans in Luke 14:28-32 “For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, 'This man began to build and was not able to finish.' Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace.“

Jesus is saying to be smart and work hard. Men, if you don’t get a grasp on your family, Satan will. By grasp I mean you should have a good idea of everything going on in and around your home. This means knowing where the money is being spent, how the calendar is being planned, how the kids are, the activities they are currently in and the like. You see men; you have many different roles that you play.
 
Men, your family’s church attendance now and in the future depends on you! These are older statistics from 2003, but I will presume they are still moderately accurate. “If both father and mother attend regularly, 33 percent of their children will end up as regular churchgoers, and 41 percent will end up attending irregularly. Only a quarter of their children will end up not practicing at all. If the father is irregular and mother regular, only 3 percent of the children will subsequently become regulars themselves, while a further 59 percent will become irregulars. Thirty-eight percent will be lost. If the father is non-practicing and mother regular, only 2 percent of children will become regular worshippers, and 37 percent will attend irregularly. Over 60 percent of their children will be lost completely to the church. Let us look at the figures the other way round. What happens if the father is regular but the mother irregular or non-practicing? Extraordinarily, the percentage of children becoming regular goes up from 33 percent to 38 percent with the irregular mother and to 44 percent with the non-practicing.  (http://www.touchstonemag.com/archives/article.php?id=16-05-024-v#ixzz2PyOplUTl)

What makes these numbers odd is that more than 90 percent of American men believe in God, and five out of six call themselves Christians. But only one out of six attend church on a given Sunday. The average man accepts the reality of Jesus Christ, but fails to see any value in going to church. This has the consequence of causing that over 70 percent of the boys who are being raised in church will abandon it during their teens and twenties. Many of these boys will never return, largely due to seeing the lack of importance placed on it by their father.

You also need to have direction on how you are going to be a good husband. If you desire to take your wife out three times a month, you will need to navigate all schedules and plan those evenings out.  Wives like it when you show initiative.  As a father, maybe you want to plan individual time with each of your children, so again you will make the plans and follow through with them. Empty promises of “We will throw the ball later” and then not coming through crush your kids hope in you and teaches them you are a liar and can’t be trusted.

You also need to set the direction of your family’s devotional life. This means praying for your spouse and keeping them accountable to make sure they are spending time with God. This will mean making time daily for the family to spend together in worship. You are family’s pastor, not me. I am responsible to help you carry out your role as the leader of your home, but you stand before God responsible for them.

Family worship is something that we will look at in depth, but suffice it to say know that you need to make time daily to read a little Bible, read a devotional book, and pray with your family. This may seem like some sort of advanced Christian practice, it is seldom done today, but it is probably the most effective way you have to minister to your family.

Some of you are thinking I will need a secretary to keep up with all this stuff that this guy is telling me to do. You won’t, but you may need a calendar and a change in evening habits. The last thing many families see in the evening is the TV.

Everyone gathers around the family idol. Well men, make a change and gather your family around and spend 15 minutes together leading them closer to God and each other.
 
Men, either make a plan for your family to succeed spiritually or plan on them failing. They will not become the men and women of God you desire for them to be by accident. Take charge and be encouraged men, you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you (Phil 4:13)!
      
Pastor Phillip



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