In his study, Raising Kingdom Kids, Pastor Tony Evans starts with an example of how on a trip to Disney World they lost their youngest son. The boy had gotten distracted by a particular attraction, by all the bright colors and entertainment. Likewise, the parents had gotten distracted by the crowd and other happenings. They turned around and their young son was nowhere to be found. Steps were retraced, security was alerted and in what was seemed like hours, all were reunited. The analogy Pastor Evans made had to do with how easy it is for parents and children to get distracted in life. The noise of the world is loud, the pictures are colorful and the enticements are real. It takes an intentional effort by dad and mom to navigate through the noise and stay tuned in as a parent today.
Be very strong and courageous. Be careful to obey all the law My servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. – Joshua 1:7, NIV. Joshua was to stay tuned in to God and His commands. Similarly, Jesus says, “Anyone who loves Me will listen to My voice and obey. The Father will love him, and We will draw close to him and make a dwelling place within him.”- John 14:23, The Voice. As dads we are to be strong and courageous, careful to obey the law, to not turn to the right or to the left, listen to His voice and embrace fully His presence in us. It takes intentional effort to tune in to Him and tune out the noise that distracts. Staying tuned in to the Word of God is not easy but the reward is eternal.
“So long as our flag flying in the open heavens is the real symbol of a genuine personal and religious liberty, so long as our homes are pure and our women are true and our men are brave, the nation will not deteriorate, but will grow stronger and steadier as it moves majestically through the wide open gates of every coming century.”- Bishop Charles B. Galloway(1849-1909). What an example of optimism in faith. Today our homes are not pure. With the deterioration we have seen on our watch it is easy for optimism to turn to despair. But we serve an awesome God and in faith we can stand firm for fathers and families to purge the schemes and impurities that have invaded our homes. I encourage every dad to take a fresh look at what is coming into the home with an eye for worldly influence versus Kingdom influence. Then discuss the results as a family and decide what action needs to be taken.
Tips to Stay Tuned In:
- Practice spiritual disciplines of regular time in scripture, prayer, worship and study;
- Enlist at least one or two battle buddies to meet with regularly and be accountable;
- Inventory movies/programs watched, internet activity, phone activity, music;
- Discern whether you and your family are reflecting a Kingdom influence or a worldly influence and take responsibility for your generational influence.
Prayer guide: Lord, I confess I have allowed myself to be coerced by worldly influence via radio, TV, internet and even general conversation. I have failed to offset these world-encounters with Word-encounters personally and I have allowed the same to happen in the home You have blessed me with. This day I commit to take responsibility and be passive no longer about what influence I and my family are under. Strengthen me to be strong and courageous, to listen well to Your voice and be tuned in to You. Amen.
A faithful father stays tuned in to God to lead his family by example.