The United States of America is the land of opportunity and opportunity is tied to the freedoms Americans enjoy. As you extend gratitude this Thanksgiving to those that have played an important role in your life, remember the founding fathers that secured the “certain unalienable rights, … Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
Of course the reason we have family gatherings at Thanksgiving is because family plays such a key role in passing the rights and freedoms from one generation to the next – Life is granted through a man and woman becoming one in marriage; Liberty is realized in family as all walk in the freedom to exercise religion; and the Pursuit of Happiness is nurtured in family as parents help kids recognize and take responsibility for their unique giftedness. It is through the grounding in marriage and family that the unique freedoms enjoyed across this nation are passed on to the next generation.
Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow Me.” When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth. - Matthew 19:21-22. He was a fine young man trying to do the right things. Unfortunately, the culture had a hold over him putting a priority on his wealth to the point of missing the opportunity before him. Today, the sexual revolution and the associated cultural influences have a hold over man, he is distracted by wrong priorities. The opportunity before us in marriage and family is being missed. With nearly half of all marriages failing, family has drifted from the grounding force it was designed to be. Yet, no divorced dad or mom wants their kids to grow up to be single parents. They know the design for the nuclear family is perfect. The charge is to purge the distractions that exist in this hyper-sexualized culture and step into the opportunity marriage and family provides for turning back to God.
In his book, Last Call for Liberty, Os Guinness draws a parallel between the sexual revolution of the 1960’s and the French Revolution of 1789. Both sought freedom from perceived constraints around their life choices. The French were driven by the utopian ideal for freedom that was not grounded in reality. The result was not pretty. Similarly, the sexual revolution is driven by utopian ideals for freedom and happiness. The results have not been pretty. The reality for a free and healthy society is for every generation to bless the next with the opportunity to be raised in a nuclear family, with dad and mom in the home. This is the environment that exemplifies healthy relationship between a man and a woman; conveys values of faith and family; teaches that freedom has constraints; and encourages children to complete their education to whatever level fits their makeup, to establish gainful employment, to move out of the family home, to marry and have children – in that order.
Prayer guide: Thank You Lord for Your word and the opportunity You have given me through Jesus the Christ. I confess that I was like the young man, living my life with my priorities for too many years. Thank You for the wake-up call. By Your grace, I commit to turn from distractions and step into the opportunity marriage and family provides for passing our freedoms to the next generation. One family and one church at a time, we will return to You. That’s the dad You call me to be and that’s the dad the next generation needs. Amen.
A faithful father steps into the opportunity to pass freedom to the next generation.