Built to Last

God created the “family unit” the first institution in the Bible. He created dimensions of order within a family unit. Our “first family” consisted of a husband, a wife, and children. There is a definite reason behind this order. God is not a god of chaos…all things are done decently and orderly. Let’s examine the importance of family as laid out in the precepts of the word of God.

The creation of the man as the first living soul in the Bible is of great significance. A seed was placed in the man to ensure the survival of future generations. The male position in the family is so powerful! He is the “spiritual leader of his family. Leadership is a great responsibility. The father is the provider, protector, teacher, preacher, disciplinarian, and spiritual guide of his family. Fathers set the spiritual tone for their families. As a man, God has given him the ability to speak blessings over those within his reign of influence. More importantly, the father is commanded to leave an inheritance for his offspring. This inheritance may be financial, but I believe it serves as a warning as to leave a godly legacy, as well. Direction for both sons and daughters proceed from the mouth of the father. He is indeed the visionary for those under his care.

Equally important is the role of a mother in a family. She too has the responsibility to provide and teach her children. The mother’s role is secondary to the father’s, but just as important. The mother has additional roles as spelled out in Proverbs 31. The mother works just as hard to provide. In addition, she plays several other roles: nurturer, teacher, manager, organizer, advisor, counselor, and rule enforcer. Her duties far exceed the time given in a day! Modernization has increased the role of a mother. Sometimes she may have to be a breadwinner, medical personnel, cheerleader, taxi driver, administrator, etc. Life becomes a juggling act to be handled with maturity, poise, style, grace, tenacity, as well as, strength. Parenting is the most important job under the sun. It is not to be taken lightly.

What a responsibility God has entrusted unto us. We get to take part in the shaping of a life temporarily loaned to us. Proverbs 22:6 admonishes that parents are responsible for training up a child in the way they should go. What a daunting task!! It can be scary to say the least. Like any job, it has its good days and bad days. I am sure that any parent can testify to the dedication it takes to love someone so unconditionally, that you would lay down your life for them! The strength it takes to hang in there when everything inside of you screams, “walk away, it’s not worth it” but you stay anyway. Parenthood must be a priority…everything else takes second place. Even when it’s tough, we are reminded that children are a blessing from the Lord.

That leads me to the role of the children. Prior to child labor laws, children were looked upon as property. Their value was based upon the ability to help with household chores and generate income to further the family’s agenda of acquiring wealth. Thank God we have come a long way from those days. Children are to obey their parents…for this is right in the sight of the Lord (Col. 3:20). God placed such an emphasis on the relationship between parents and children that He wrote it in stone as one of the Ten Commandments with promise (Deut. 5:16). A child’s willingness to honor, respect, and obey their parents determines length of days. Therefore, the parent/child relationship reflects the way child will relate to God, their Heavenly Father. Ultimately, this relationship will be so tested to the point it will either grow stronger or grow weaker.

Strong families are built one brick at a time. Each brick strategically placed upon a strong foundation…the Rock. The glue that holds a family together must be Christ, the head of the household…the Chief Cornerstone. With Christ in control, each day gets better and better. Families are built to last!!

Written by Laura Alexander


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