He was suffering from some inflammation in his knees but thought it just the natural progression from years on the athletic fields. The doctor prescribed anti-inflammatory medication for the short term and proposed surgery as the solution. A nutritionist suggested evaluating dietary in-take, specifically inflammatory staples such as dairy products, corn and pasta, food he enjoyed often.
Across this Lenten season, have you evaluated your dietary in-take? Have you given up something that was a staple in your diet? Or have you taken something on as has been promoted in this latest ‘Dad Talk’ series? Whichever the case, I pray your hunger for the word of God has been on the increase as we approach Holy Week.
“You have become dull of hearing … You need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food, for everyone who lives on milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, since he is a child. But solid food is for the mature.” – Hebrews 5:11-14. The author of Hebrews is providing a warning against complacency. One may think he knows Jesus and the Easter story and in turn assume the kids do too. But if a dad does not stay diligent in the word of God and intentional in leading discussion in family about Jesus’ life, His parables, His miracles, His death and His resurrection, especially in this Easter season, it all can get lost in chocolate bunnies and egg hunts. In his Truth for Life Devotional, Alistair Begg writes, “Imagine visiting your favorite restaurant and noticing that all the patrons are seated at their tables drinking milk from large baby bottles. What a bizarre scene that would be! Yet this is the picture that the writer of Hebrews painted when he urged the Jewish Christians of his day to remain hungry for greater and greater Christlikeness. He knew that many were already becoming complacent in their faith. Those who should have already been teachers instead needed to review their ABCs all over again.” Milk is an inflammatory. The inflammation is the evil one at work to distract dads from the primary responsibility to lead spiritually by example in the home. The charge is to rebuke evil by evaluating your in-take and establishing a steady diet of God’s word for self and family.
The medication was cancelled and surgery averted! Evaluation of the dietary in-take led to eliminating dairy, corn and pasta from his diet and there have been no problems with inflammation of the knees since. It was a wake-up call about complacency with his dietary intake. The corresponding wake-up call for all maturing Christians, physically and spiritually, is to reject complacency and stay hungry for Christlikeness.
Prayer guide: Father, thank You for Your word and Your call to be more like You. I confess physical and spiritual complacency in my life. Forgive me. I have moved on from the cheeseburger, fries and milkshake diet and want to mature under a more substantial spiritual diet. I am hungry for You Lord. I want to be more Christlike where You have me. As we move into Holy Week and Easter Sunday, I commit to spend daily time with You through Scripture and prayer, and to discuss the whole of the Easter story in family. That is the dad You call me to be and that’s the dad my kids need to see. Amen.
A faithful father rejects complacency and stays hungry for Christlikeness.