There is a lot of finger-pointing going on today. It is natural to look for someone to blame when we are struggling. One example is pointing at the teachers for failing to educate the children. Teachers then point at the school administration for various mandates that inhibit their ability to educate. Then the administration points at the government for all the hoops they have to jump through to get funding.
The old adage that when you point a finger at someone else or the status quo, there are always three fingers pointing back at you. It is not natural to pay attention to those fingers but it is beneficial. The first finger is usually involvement – Do you show up at the kids’ school, the school board meetings and city council? The second finger is engagement – Do you know the teachers and their curricula? Have you checked out the library? The third finger is worldview – Is a biblical worldview being taught and exemplified in the home? Are you viewing situations through the lens of Scripture?
Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. – Ephesians 6:11-12. There is nothing passive about Christianity. Rulers and authorities, be they in government, in schools, in the private sector or in churches, can get drunk on power. The spiritual forces of evil provide plenty of intoxicating temptation along those lines. The challenge for dads today is to know when and how to stand firm against those trying to put the one True God behind other gods. The charge is to prayerfully put the full armor of God on every day (Eph.6:14-17):
- Belt of Truth – start every day reading the word of God;
- Breastplate of righteousness – always do what is right;
- Feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace – be more Christ-like today than yesterday;
- Helmet of salvation – maintain an eternal perspective in this temporal world;
- Shield of faith – position it well to discern and extinguish arrows coming in; and the
- Sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God – have the sword drawn and wield it wisely to cut through the devil’s schemes.
Finger-pointing is reserved for pointing to the one True God as we each work to emulate His triune nature – Getting involved physically, engaging emotionally and leading spiritually by example – in the home, church and community. When we fall short on the journey as the man, husband, father or friend we are called to be, the only one to point to is the Heavenly Father. He will honor our efforts and cover our shortfalls.
Prayer guide: Father, thank You for Your Son’s physical presence in this world, for the Counselor’s emotional engagement with the disciples, and for being our Father, providing spiritual leadership through Your word. I confess that I have been passive in this world, finger-pointing in weakness instead of standing firm in Your strength. Forgive me. Grant me the discipline to put the full armor of You on every morning and stand firm as the man You expect me to be in this world. That is the dad You call me to be and that’s the dad my kids need to see. Amen.
A faithful father points to the one True God and emulates His triune nature.