He was not a bad guy. He worked hard at his job and was determined to be a better husband and father than the men he saw growing up. He certainly had witnessed enough examples of what not to do. He led his family to church most Sundays and he made the kids’ events as his work schedule allowed.
One day the man’s pastor invited him to go on a Walk to Emmaus. It was described as a spiritual walk involving a four-day retreat with other men. There would be no phones, no watches, no contact outside of the retreat center. There would be a series of talks, time for discussion with other men in small groups, time for prayer and personal contemplation, good food and more good food. At the end of the long weekend, he had a newfound understanding that God had been with him every step of his life, that Jesus is risen and that the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is real. Life took a dramatic turn in relationship with Christ and he stepped up in his role as a spiritual leader in family.
The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, Who was crucified. He is not here; He has risen, just as He said. Come and see the place where He lay. Then go quickly and tell His disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see Him.’ Now I have told you.” – Matthew 28:5-7. The disciples were not bad guys. They had done their best to follow Jesus when He was with them. It had not been easy but now He was gone. Thoughts may have crept in that He was not the King after all - Certainly not the king that was going to overthrow the Romans as they may have anticipated. Then the women showed up and said, “He is risen!” The disciples would go to Galilee to meet the risen Christ; they would later watch Him ascend to His Father; and at Pentecost would receive power through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. All exactly as Jesus had told them. Life took a dramatic turn as they each stepped into their new role boldly and confidently.
Boldness and confidence in relationship with Christ is often compromised by tolerance and timidity in relationship with the world. In an undying effort to not offend anyone, the One who died for the sin of the world is offended. Worldly influence in the home and church is granted way more power than it deserves. Enough already! Jesus walked out of the tomb and sent the Counselor to remind disciples of all He had said. Dads are disciples called to step into the role of spiritual leaders in the home and beyond in the power of the resurrected Christ and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit to rebuke worldly influences.
Prayer guide: Thank You Jesus for going to the cross, walking out of that tomb, appearing to the disciples and others, ascending to the Father and sending the Counselor. I had that head knowledge about You but failed to embrace Your love for me at the heart level. You are risen indeed! Forgive me for passively walking through this life in my power when You expect so much more. Grant me boldness and confidence in Your resurrection and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit to be the spiritual leader You expect me to be in family, the church and beyond. Amen.
A faithful father leads his family in the power of the risen Christ and indwelling of the Holy Spirit.