Billy Graham said, "A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed, and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society."
Fathers are either famous or infamous, to one degree or another. A father is either a father, or he is not. A sperm donor may sow the seed for a child's life, but a father injects social and spiritual direction for the child's living and destiny.
There is no substitute for a genuine father. And perhaps shockingly the very future is at stake ... the future of our families, our society, our churches and our nation. Yet even more solemnly, the spiritual destiny of untold millions is at risk due to fatherlessness. And God cares. He cares more deeply than we can fully comprehend.
Make no mistake. Whether or not we are aware of it, there is a massive assault being waged against fathers and fathering. You, your legacy as a father and the eternal destiny of your family are destined for destruction and discard in the dustbin of history.
How, then, can this God-ordained power and purpose be recovered? The answer rests with every man and requires immediate response, for the hour is late, and the culmination of history and prophecy lie straight ahead.
Foundational Pillars of Fatherhood
Fatherhood is the overall spirit and sphere of what it means to truly be a father. The foundational blocks of fatherhood are not merely important but of absolute necessity for building a good and godly legacy that lasts.
1. Purpose. God has ordained fatherhood for a purpose. Every man must come to a genuine sense of God's purpose, embracing His promise by faith and daily doing His will with expectation that through simple obedience, God will, by His gracious favor, yield a legacy above and beyond all that he can ask or even think (Phil. 2:13, Eph. 3:20).
2. Perspective. Fathers are ordained by God to bring His fathering perspective to earth. It is therefore no mystery why fathers and fathering have been under such increasing attack to destroy or defame not only fathers and fatherhood but our appreciation and understanding of God as Father.
3. Presence. There is no substitute for fatherly presence. Without presence, purpose wanes and perspective is lost. Presence separates mere men from manly fathers who desire their existence to have meaning.
4. Principle. Principle is the backbone of fatherhood. A principled man is powerful in influence because he is a lover of truth. He is not swayed by the seductive dictates of culture. "His heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord" (Ps. 112:7b).
5. Protection. Fatherhood provides an umbrella of protection. It is reliable security that engenders faith rather than exposing to ungodly fear. A father's protection is both practical and spiritual. While desiring happiness, he pursues holiness, ensuring God's honor, for it is written, "for those who honor Me, I will honor" (1 Sam. 2:30b). Father God's protection is secured by our trust and obedience.
6. Provision. Provision is fundamental to fatherhood. Purported protection without provision is perversion of God's purpose for fatherhood. God's greatest fatherly lament is connected to the children of Israel's failure to value and trust their Father's provision and promise.
7. Passion. It takes passion to fulfill purpose. Lack of godly passion for fatherhood reveals lack of godly purpose. A father without godly passion for fatherhood is nothing but a child in a man's body, living in the myopia of his eternal self, without vision or consciousness of divine destiny, either for himself or for his progeny.
8. Persistence. A true father exercises persistence in passion for his progeny. He constantly "press[es] toward the goal to the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus" for the fruit of God-ordained fatherhood (Phil. 3:14). The persistent father seeks faithfully to be blameless, as a son of God the Father, in the midst even of a crooked and perverse generation, knowing that his fatherhood has not been in vain (Phil. 2:15-16).
9. Patience. Patience is divine elasticity, enabling the process of fathering to fulfill God's promise without fracturing the brittle bones of often recalcitrant sons and daughters. Impatience frustrates the enabling grace of God, short-circuiting God's longsuffering as our Father. The trying of our fatherly faith works patience, that we may be complete, lacking in nothing (James 1:3-4).
10. Prayerfulness. Prayerfulness is the attitude of continual submission between fathers on earth and the heavenly Father. Let no man claim prayerful connectedness with the Father for his own fathering if he comes with unclean hands or an impure heart.
11. Promise. A true father's greatest desire is the loving trust of his children. Yet there is no trust without either express or implied promise. When either express or implied promise by a father is broken, trust is fractured, godly influence wanes and legacy looms as a painful liability.
12. Power. Fatherhood, derived from God's Fatherhood, has power. How then are we as earthly fathers to handle such delegated power or authority without corrupting it into a diabolical dictatorship? The answer is in simple submission, always in an attitude of surrender to the Father's will, as it was with Jesus (Phil. 2:8-9). Even so is our own fatherhood exalted, birthing godly influence and an eternal kingdom legacy.
For deeper understanding of the power of fatherhood, listen to this episode of the VIEWPOINT with Chuck Crismier on Charisma Podcast Network, where he discusses how the power of fatherhood is rooted by God's perspective, not culture.
Chuck Crismier is an author, pastor, former trial attorney, president of SAVE AMERICA Ministries and host of the VIEWPOINT podcast on Charisma Podcast Network. Visit his website at saveus.org, where his book Hearts of the Fathers can be obtained.
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