Today is Father’s Day and I would like to wish all fathers a blessed Father’s Day, and pray that our Heavenly Father will richly bless all fathers in PSPC with a deep sense of love, joy and peace.
It is not easy being a father in our modern society. Not only are fathers expected to continue to play the traditional role of the bread winner, modern day fathers are also expected to be actively involved in the children’s lives, be a loving support to his spouse, contribute to household chores, involve himself in the community, and at the same time excel at the office.
I am heartened to see many men at PSPC working hard to take care of not only their own biological family, but also the larger church family. For example, we have the BB officers (and the husbands of GB officers) who actively care for the BB and GB boys and girls, serving as a father figure beyond the requirements of the Brigade. In our Sunday School, Lighthouse and TCH, many fathers serve as caring teachers and mentors. In PCGM and the Men’s Ministry, our men continue to strive towards attaining the qualities of spiritual maturity and manliness.
From my own reflections about fatherhood in the Bible, I can draw out certain special qualities of a father in relation to his children:
· Provide for the children (Luke 11:11-13).
· Teach, guide and discipline children (Deuteronomy 11:19).
· Have love and compassion on your children (Psalm 103:13).
· Model faith to your children (Deuteronomy 4:9).
· Relate and empathise with your children (Colossians 3:21).
· Leave a spiritual legacy to your children (Proverbs 13:22, 2 John 1:4).
I join with all fathers to pray that we can fulfill these qualities and continue to be a blessing to our family and those around us.
As a father, I am also all too aware of how often we fall short of the standards expected of us. Just like the many men in the Bible, we struggle with our own physical, intellectual and spiritual limitations and shortcomings. Sometimes we also get discouraged when we are not able to accomplish the things we set off to do. At times like this, we should take comfort in the biblical promises of our loving Heavenly Father, who unreservedly love and provide for us in spite of our shortcomings. Fathers, I encourage you to offer your weaknesses to God and instead, fortify your faith by recognizing His love and enjoy His provision of people who love you in your midst. In other words, enjoy this Father’s Day fully with your children.
Now, for those who are wondering how to celebrate Father’s Day and make it a special day for your dad, here are my suggestions:
· Spend time to talk to your dad. Ask about his work, his health, his interests, his hopes.
· Get to know something more about your dad. Ask your mother or grandparents for something you may not know about your dad. Ask his friends. Appreciate him for his other roles besides being your dad.
· Do something with your dad. Try to think of something that he likes to do and spend time doing it with him. Take a walk around the neighbourhood, play a game, look at some family photographs.
· Do something for your dad. Wash his car. Give him a massage or a pedicure. Cook him a meal.
· Take a good look at your dad. It’s been a long time since you’ve taken a good look at him. Get close and look at his hands, his feet, his wrinkles on the face, his smile.
· Give him a meaningful or thoughtful gift. If you are able, splurge on him especially if he is someone who does not spend on himself to give to the family.
· Tell someone (within or outside the family) one thing you appreciate about your dad, and hopefully your dad will get to hear it from them.
· Pray for your dad. Ask him what he wants you to pray for and pray for him.
· Finally, do something wise and good. (Proverbs 10:1 – A wise son (or daughter) makes a glad father, but a foolish son is a sorrow to his mother (and father).)
Happy Father’s Day!