Today, it amazes me that my daughter, Jennifer, is about the same age my mother was when she, my first child, was born. They were both born on January 17th and my mom was ecstatic to be a grandmother on her birthday.
Before I knew it, someone grabbed newborn Jennifer by the ankles and spanked her bottom until she cried, and then someone said to me, “And by the way, this is your daughter.”
With that kind of an introduction, it hit me hard realizing I had some different kind of work to do.
Fathers, as well as mothers, have been given responsibilities in
regard to their children.
Somewhere along the way, I learned that dads would do well to imitate the actions of a father we can read about in the Bible: Job.
In Job 1:5, we learn that he was the spiritual leader in his family. I’ve been told that Job is one of the oldest books of the Bible.
Job was concerned and devoted to the spiritual well being of his children.
Today, I see many fathers are concerned about the physical well being of their children,
but how many can say their actions demonstrate as great a concern about
the spiritual well being of their children?
I Timothy 5:8
The Bible tells us that father’s need to assert their “headship” and their “authority” in the home.
Sometimes, a father must “see to it” that something is done. Like in so many other things, the key is to see beyond the temporal and see the eternal.
As dads, we go through many experiences and like Job, it is a good idea to have a positive outlook on life (Job 1:21).
Let’s face it. We all have our moments of disgruntlement, but that should be the exception rather than the rule.
This was the case with Job. For Job to have faced such a catastrophe in the
manner he did, it says much about his nature. We all have good and bad in our lives, but what is our focus? (Philippians 4:11)
Job experienced a heartbreaking, intense season of suffering, one that breaks him physically, emotionally, even spiritually, but he never forsakes his faith.
We learned that God also answers our prayers, just in His own timing. In the way God responds to Job, He makes clear that though we may ask, our sense of comprehension will never fully grasp God and His ways. Still, He is trustworthy.
Is it not the height of ingratitude for Christians, redeemed people, to
complain? It is within a father’s power to “sour” his children on life (Colossians 3:21).
Job was a humble man (Job 42:1-6) and was not afraid to say, “I was wrong, please forgive me.”
In the end, Job gained more than he lost. And he was restored in all aspects of his life: health, family, finances. God showed Job favor as he remained faithful in his belief.
This information is important because these details reflect the loving nature of God. God’s love was present despite Job’s unhelpful friends, wife, and harsh circumstances.
God does not allow sorrow for the sake of suffering. He allows us to experience trials to make us better people and expose weak areas in our lives. Job was able to learn more about God during his struggle and further build his trust in the Lord.
Job’s suffering too also allowed God to affect Job’s friends. They initially blamed Job and learned that Job hadn’t done anything to merit his suffering, thus, showing them a side of God they were unaware of before.
Throughout the entire book, Job prayed, struggled, and eventually overcame. He never stopped having a relationship with God. Nor did he curse God as his wife encouraged him to do in the second chapter.
Job’s steadfast faith offers proof that no matter life’s circumstances, maintaining faith is always a possibility.
Whether we are spiritually, emotionally, or physically stricken, we can keep our trust in God. He will at some point deliver us from our troubles, and make us better from the experience.
An important lesson I have learned is that suffering comes upon all, sinful or guiltless. Jesus was the only person without sin and even He knew suffering.
While we may encounter our own unexpected problems like Job, his story reminds us that even when we don’t understand why we can put trust in God.
No one can fully understand God, and that gives us all the more reason to pray. And when we pray and while we wait, we know in the end God will make us into someone better than where we started. Job proved that.
As fathers, we should demonstrate humility before our children (Matthew 5:3) because our spiritual growth demands honesty and humility.
As a father, you have been given a gift; a gift that enables you to mold
and shape an eternal soul.
Rather than abusing this gift, please use it to God’s glory. Take your role as a father seriously so that as the years pass you have no serious regrets.
In God We Trust
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