Over the last fifteen years or so we’ve had cable television on and off depending on where we were living at the time. This week we had it disconnected. What a liberating feeling and it’s been a little more peaceful around here lately. As peaceful as things can be with seven children between the ages of eleven and sixteen months.
A guest post by Maynard H. Belt
“I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, Who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the Word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all long-suffering and teaching.” II Timothy 4:1-2
“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord….” Psalm 33:12
There is no question that patriotism in our land has increased immensely since the 9/11 terrorist attack upon our country. Yet, in the very midst of such intensified loyalty, just last month the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, one of the most liberal in the nation, and whose decisions are often overturned, ruled that the words “under God,” added to the Pledge of Allegiance by Congress in 1954, violated the constitutional principle of separation of church and state. The decision stemmed from a lawsuit by a California father, a San Francisco doctor and atheist, who was annoyed and offended that his daughter had to listen to her second-grade classmates recite the Pledge of Allegiance.
Saturday our oldest daughter Holly rode with the National Baby Food Festival Queen’s Court in a parade in Muskegon. It was an all-American, beautiful day. While we were waiting for the parade to start I was instructing the little guys on the proper way to behave when Old Glory passes.
We could easily become complacent in our fathering as Christians when we see the current statistics for homes that lack the physical presence of a father. We may think our children will be all right because we are there. But we risk being virtually absent as fathers if we do not have three essential ingredients as part of our practice of fathering.
The following is the sermon I preached at Jonesville Baptist Church on Father’s Day, June 16, 2002. You may want to send it to a father dear to you.
I’m going, virtually – by way of recording, to The Basics of Pastoral Ministry 2002, a conference in its third year, lead by Alistair Begg noted author and pastor of Parkside Church of Cleveland, Ohio, and host of the radio program Truth For Life.