Fatherhood is a blessing from God
‘Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”
— Ephesians 6:4
This coming Sunday, we in The Bahamas along with people all over the world, will celebrate Fathers’ Day. Like Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day is a time when we celebrate and show appreciation to our fathers.
Even though this special day is a day of celebration, many individuals do not see it as such. They do not know the love and care of a father. Such people have never enjoyed the company of their father because he has been absent from their lives.
Some came to know their father in later years, however, that experience has left a bitter sweet taste in their mouth. The individual whom they came to know as father refused to acknowledge them as a child of their own. I know of individuals who have had such an experience.
In other situations, many children know their fathers, but the father has never supported them socially or financially. Many such fathers go about bragging about their children, but they do not know whether their children have had a single meal during the day or sleep in a decent bed in a reasonable environment.
Fathers, love your children. Become active in their lives. Make sure that your children are properly cared for even though you may be estranged from the mother.
First, be responsible in the children you father. Having children all over the place does not make you a man. Animals can do that. God has given humans a brain, which puts us above the animals.
Therefore, we should not act like them. Unlike the animals that eventually fend for themselves, children are different. They need to be nurtured. They need proper guidance from a loving and caring parent.
It irks me when I hear men bragging about the many children they have fathered, as if they are talking about things. Children are not things. They have feelings and they desire to be wanted and protected by their father.
Daily our young men are finding themselves involved in the criminal justice system. I am sure that many of them would have turned out differently if they had the opportunity of growing up under the guidance of a father.
Mind you, I am not saying that children who grow up in a home with a caring mother and father do not find themselves involved in the criminal justice system. Many children who come from good homes turn out to be criminals. I am simply saying that, in my opinion, children who have the guidance of a father stand a better chance of living their lives as good citizens, free of crime and violence.
Fatherhood is a blessing from God. He is the prototype of fathers. Therefore, we should look to God as we take on the role of fatherhood. We pray for his guidance as we raise our children.
I pray that every Bahamian male, who is a father, would re-examine his role as a father and make an effort to carry out that role as God intended him to. When fathers become actively involved in the rearing of their children, they help to build the nation.
Young men need a man or a father figure in their lives. They starve for it. Consequently, for the most part, when they have a male figure in their lives, they become useful citizens.
I am praying for the men of our nation. I pray that God will open their eyes and help them to understand the role of fatherhood and guide them in that pursuit. Happy Fathers’ Day! Amen.
- Rev. Samuel M. Boodle, pastor at the Lutheran Church of Nassau, can be reached at P.O. Box N 4794, Nassau, Bahamas or telephone 323-4107; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.