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South Texas Living


More is expected of fathers




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June 18, 2014 | 2,585 views | Post a comment

It is said that men are basically happier than women. There is a lot of evidence to support the theory. Besides, what do you expect of such simple creatures?

Your last name stays the same throughout life. The garage is all yours, except for the lost space for a washer and dryer. Wedding plans take care of themselves. Wedding dress, $5000; tuxedo, $100. Chocolate is just another snack. You can never get pregnant. You can wear a white T-shirt to the water park or you can wear no shirt at all. Car mechanics tell you the truth. You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is “too icky.” You don’t have to stop and think which way to turn a nut on a bolt. Wrinkles add character. People never stare at your chest when in conversation. One mood all the time. A five-day vacation requires one suitcase. You can open all your own jars. Three pairs of shoes are more than enough. Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack. If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend. You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness. The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades. You can play with toys all your life. You can “do your nails” with a pocketknife. One wallet, one pair of shoes, and one color for all seasons. Christmas shopping takes 20 minutes. Shaving is an option and a mustache is acceptable. You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes. Your belly usually hides your big hips. It’s an uncomplicated “get ’er done” way of life.

[Psalm 127 & 128] (From the “Easy-to-Read Version” World Bible Translation Center; Fort Worth, Texas). “If it is not the Lord that builds a house, the builder is wasting his time. If it is not the Lord that watches over a city, the guards are wasting their time. It is a waste of time to get up early and stay up late, trying to make a living. God cares for the people he loves, even while they are sleeping. Children are a gift from the Lord. They are a reward from a mother’s body. A young man’s sons are like the arrows in a soldier’s arrow bag. A man that fills his arrow bag with sons will be very happy. That man will never be defeated. His sons will defend him against his enemies in public places. All of the Lord’s followers are happy. Those people live the way God wants. You will enjoy the things you work for. You will be happy, and good things will happen to you. At home, your wife will be like a fruitful grape vine. Around the table, your children will be like olive trees you planted. The Lord will truly bless his followers this way. I hope the Lord blesses you from Zion. I hope you enjoy the blessings in Jerusalem all of your life. And I hope you live to see your grandchildren. Let there be peace in Israel!”

Men do lead a simple, happy, carefree, purpose-driven life with a lax relationship with God. But, God says, a husband and father is not expected to live this way. I can stand up and admit to being a typical male and wanting to do it my way in my younger days and with a guilty conscience, knowing what I know now, confess to too many mistakes in family life. God says let Me be the center of your family life and there will be peace in the family. Husbands and fathers must stop trying to be stand-alone leaders (dictators) of the family. When fathers teach as God-fearing leaders, children become individuals who obey father, mother, and God. Children will become God-fearing, loving, productive citizens of the world. Fathers don’t have to spoil their family. Let God do the blessing and spoiling in His way.

Thomas W. Bonham is an associate minister with the Floresville Church of Christ. Email him at twbonham@hotmail.com. Find his column on his blog at http://wilsoncountynews.com.
 

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