Poets and other writers have been generous in heaping praise and adulation upon mothers. This is as it should be, for a godly mother cannot be given too much praise.
But fathers have received far fewer eulogies and have not been given the public honor and attention which their position and work deserve. This is probably due to the basic differences in male and female character. Whereas mothers are usually gentle, tearful, tender and introspective in spirit, fathers are generally stern, ready to fight the battles of life and to take disappointments without a word or a tear.
Some have therefore judged fathers to be hard, unspiritual creatures who are devoid of feeling. This is an unjustified judgment! A father is not inferior to a mother; he is simply different. Remember that when God selected a figure to impress us with his love for his wayward children, he chose the figure of a father and his child. This, of course, is a reference to the father in the parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11-32).
The father’s role in making a home successful and happy is equally as important as the mother’s — although vastly different in some respects. As in every other marriage relationship, husband and wife are complementary to each other. Each parent contributes his special abilities in such a way as to reinforce and strengthen the other.
Fathers, 100% of the responsibilities of parenthood are yours! The souls of your precious children depend upon you for proper guidance. We need to get all information and counsel concerning the role of a father that we can possibly come by.
And, since parenthood is a spiritual responsibility, we especially need to study the Bible for the information contained in its sacred pages relative to the responsibilities of a Christian Father/Husband.
God Says Organize!
The autocratic home must first of all be properly organized. God gives the blueprint for that organization in 1 Corinthians 11:3: “The head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.”
This particular scripture does not include children, but others do:
Ephesians 6:1 (ESV) Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.
Children come under Daddy and Mother’s authority. Any time we get Daddy, Mother, and the children’s positions out of kilter, we are in serious trouble. We certainly aren’t happy. Daddy is humiliated, Mother embarrassed, and the children aren’t content, either. Society suffers and the nation is weakened, too, by the way.
God has designated that men carry certain responsibilities and that women assume others. Men and women are not the same in purpose or responsibility, but they are equal in importance. God’s plan is that we are “a 100% Daddy and a 100% Mother.”
THE ROLE OF A CHRISTIAN FATHERHUSBAND
1. The Christian fatherhusband is to show himself a man.
When he was a child it was proper for him to act as a child. When he was immature he was not expected to function in the framework of maturity. However, with the coming of marriage and home responsibilities he is expected to act like a man.
Marriage is no place for two mates to behave like children! Children need adults to take care of their shelter, food, clothing, medical needs, and educational requirements. This is no realm for the immature who would care less about meeting this week’s grocery bill or from where money for monthly bills and the rent will come. Being a husband and father demands maturity in men.
2. To Lead (not to boss).
Be the head of the home. This simply entails being the one by whom and through whom all decisions and orders of the family’s business are approved. You give the ultimate yes and no. If you are wise, you will gladly share this with your spouse in many areas, but when it is all said and done, it is your responsibility.
Be the protector. This protection finds its fruit in both physical and emotional protection. God built with a man the ability to minimize his family’s fears and feelings of insecurity. With his deep, strong voice, he can scare any intruders away.
Be the physical provider. From the beginning of time, it has been God’s decree that the man is to make the living for his family (Gen. 3:17-19; Exodus 21:10). It’s important that the family be taught the lesson of contentment so ‘demand and command’ be held in check — in other words, live within your means.
Be the spiritual leader. A man’s spiritual welfare and that of his wife and children are resting in his hands. A woman is to submit willingly to man’s leadership (1 Cor. 11:3). Again, it is the wise husband who uses the nurturing skills and patience of the mother in this area.
The husband should be a dominant figure in the life of his family, even though he should not be dominating. He should be a leader without being a dictator. He should be the…head of the home, while carefully preserving the equal rights and privileges of the wife. He should be the decision-maker, after careful and thorough consultation and agreement with his partner.
The husband should assume the leadership role, not just proclaim it! The husband should have or develop the capacity to lead by model more than mouth. A study found a close tie between violence and the method a couple uses for making decisions. If the husband makes almost all decisions, he is far more likely to hit his wife or be hit by her. Between husbands and wives who share the decision making, there is almost no violence.
Most husbands/fathers don’t realize their homes have problems. 83% of the wives say their marriage could be improved while only 53% of their husbands agree that their marriage could be improved.
Major problems are caused by dominating husbands. The wife may respond with clinical depression, reaction formation, or apathy.
Since he permits no independent emotional reactions, he can drive someone who takes him seriously quite mad. However, since he seems so secure, correct, and normal, he attracts people who doubt themselves and feel security in his supposed strength. They attract themselves to him and grow increasingly insecure as they find themselves reacting ‘incorrectly’ to life’s events.
PRINCIPLES OF ASSUMED VERSES PROCLAIMED LEADERSHIP:
Proclaimed Leadership Assumed Leadership
gives orders without asking asks questions, seeks to truly hear,
questions, without permitting questions suggests alternatives
makes demands, dishes out directions; respects freedom and dignity of others,
lays down the law, is defensive if can affirm the truth clearly and concretely
challenged but non-defensively
requires compliance regardless of values willing cooperation, works for
consent or agreement; open agreement and understanding;
pushes and manipulates; one man leads, attracts, persuades personal relationships
rule in over under position in side-by-side identification
says “You do, you must do, says “Come, let’s do, we might have done,
you ought to have done; can we try?”
you’d better do”
depends on his own external generates acceptance, cooperation, and
authority to motivate others; reconciliation;
separates and isolates people. unites and helps persons relate to each other
Men’s Complaints About Wives
1. She demands immediate answers. I want to think about it for a while.
- She always looks for hidden meanings. She reads in meanings that aren’t there.
- She is never satisfied with what I tell her. I don’t like cross-examinations.
- She belabors the subject – wants all the details. Her stories take detours. Why can’t she get to the point?
- She can’t separate the issue from the person. She thinks “If you disagree with my view, then you don’t love me.”
- She brings unrelated issues into the argument.
- She interrupts me. She tends to break into whatever I say before I’m finished.
- She desires more to be understood than to understand.
Wives’ Complaints About Husbands
1. He doesn’t listen to full conversations or even sentences but judges immediately.
- He doesn’t respect my opinion but hears it only when someone else says it.
- He won’t risk confrontation. If I complain, he doesn’t answer, and I feel like a nonperson.
- Reminding is taken as nagging.
- To him, his problems are major. Mine are insignificant and incessant.
- He doesn’t listen – just pretends – and when I catch him at it, he gets angry.
- He won’t share his true feelings, but they emerge heatedly later on.
- I share feelings and frustrations, but nothing happens.
- If something goes wrong in his life, he makes me feel as if I have failed.
- He can’t share the deep feelings of intimacy I need.
- He’s too busy for communication (said by several women).
- When he’s mad at the dog or car, why is it my fault and why does he take it out on me?
- He can’t admit he’s wrong.
- Why tell me about the kids’ misbehavior? Why doesn’t he do something about it? Instead, he tattles.
- He ignores me all day and then wants quick and playful sex at night. I don’t want sex without attention first.
— From Stress and the Healthy Family by Dolores Curran, 1985.
1. Be fair. A man setting out to lead his wife and children must first of all be fair. Listen, especially to the wishes of your wife. Don’t expect of your family what you are not willing to do or be yourself. Take care of your family’s needs before your own.
2. Be firm. When there is no leader, there is no leadership. If you are seeking to be fair, you’ll know when to listen and make changes.
3. Be faithful. A family will do anything asked of them if they know you love them. How can you hurt your wife the most? Don’t love her; avoid her; don’t compliment her; make her feel as if she is inferior. Some treat the waitress better than their wife at home. Our wife needs to know, without doubt, that they are loved!