The president of the United States typically gives a ‘State of the Union’ address to a joint session of Congress annually. Similarly, governors provide a ‘State of the State’ address and mayors, a ‘State of the City’. There is a general review on performance over the past year and new initiatives are presented. Some states and cities are on solid ground financially and operationally in preparing their ‘State of …’ Others, not so much.
I pray you are on solid ground as you review the ‘State of … your home. There is plenty to review over this past year and new initiatives to consider. In many homes, a dad’s physical presence became a given. How did that go for you? And how did it impact your engagement with the kids? Usually, increased physical presence also helps a dad engage emotionally. Has there been positive movement in that dimension of faithful fathering? How about your spiritual leadership? Review spiritual growth across the year as a family. Did your prayer life improve – personal time, prayer as a couple and prayer with the kids? Did you initiate the reading of scripture as a family?
Furthermore, Josiah got rid of the mediums and spiritists, the household gods, the idols and all the other detestable things seen in Judah and Jerusalem. This he did to fulfill the requirements of the law written in the book that Hilkiah the priest had discovered in the temple of the Lord. Neither before nor after Josiah was there a king like him who turned to the Lord as he did – with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his strength, in accordance with all the Law of Moses. – 2Kings 23:24-25. Josiah’s turn began in 2Kings 22:11, “When the king heard the words of the Book of the Law, he tore his robes.” The realization of how far the people had drifted from God under his dad and previous kings was painfully clear. The ‘State of the Nation’ was not good. As a leader that turned to the Lord, he led the nation in repentance and renewal. Josiah read the Book of the Law in the presence of all the people and charged them to repent and renew the covenant with the Lord. Then he proceeded to destroy all the altars, high places and Asherah poles built to worship other gods. Josiah turned to the Lord physically with all his strength, emotionally with all his soul and spiritually with all his heart. Then he led the way in reading, repentance and renewal. Josiah was a faithful father!
Who is a modern-day Josiah? Is the president of the United States going to read Scripture and call the nation to repentance and renewal? How about your governor or mayor? Very doubtful. You are a modern-day Josiah, Dad. Start reading Scripture yourself every day – My suggestion is to read the letters, then the gospels and Acts, then Genesis through Revelation. On the journey, read appropriate passages together as a family. Lead the way in reading, repentance and renewal in Jesus the Christ.
Prayer guide: Thank You Lord for Your word and for Josiah’s example. I confess that I was not alert to how far I had drifted from You as I simply lived life in this world. While making money and paying bills, important stuff, I was leading my family in the world, not to You. Forgive me. By Your grace, my heart was turned to read, repent and renew a covenantal relationship with Jesus the Christ. Strengthen me as a modern-day Josiah to lead my family, church and circles of influence in reading Your word, repentance and renewal in relationship with You. That is the dad You call me to be and that’s the dad the next generation needs to see. Amen.
A faithful father leads his family in reading, repentance and renewal in Christ.