In the front of Martin Luther’s Small Catechism, the first thing it says is, “The Ten Commandments: As the head of the family should teach them in a simply way to his household.” I’ve been teaching confirmation classes since the Fall of 1995 and I am sad to report that most families don’t know that the head of the family is the one that’s supposed to teach everyone in the household about the Christian faith. I’ve seen so many moms and dads drop their kids off at church for worship, for Sunday school and for confirmation classes, without coming in themselves. It is frustrating when I’ve been trained to supplement the initial teaching of the faith by moms and dads, but in reality I’m just about the only one teaching the faith.
And that’s not good. I don’t have the required relationship with a child, other than with my own, to be able to effectively teach them. Thankfully, God is a good and loving God and makes up for my failures.
But since we love our kids more than just about anything else, I would think that this part of the parent-child relationship would be more important. What could be more vital to a child than their faith in Jesus Christ?
This year’s confirmation class has proved to be a little different than in years past. I see evidence that I’m not the only one teaching the faith, and it is great to see! There are more dads now taking an active role in sharing their faith in Jesus with their kids.
This weekend, take a look around in church. Will you see more dads in our church than seems to be the norm in the American church today? When a dad is worshipping with his family, that family is tremendously blessed. The kids, especially, are given a foundation that will see them through all the pitfalls and storms of life that certainly await them.
There are some great examples of dads in my church, and I’m proud to be associated with them. If you want to be a better dad raising strong sons and daughters, start by getting out the family Bible and just reading to your kids before bedtime (or another time that works for you). Attend worship each week with your family. And pray for your kids. I know dads that actually pray over their sleeping children each evening – what a powerful way to be the head of the family that Martin Luther wrote the Small Catechism for.
©2008 True Men Ministries.