Recently I was asked about recommendations for resources on grandfathering.
There are some great ones out there, and I’ll pass a few on below. But right now, I am living a reality that has brought new light to a key facet of grandfathering as well as discipleship.
Many of you have been praying for our family, and while I won’t go into details here, we ask that you continue to join us in prayer for our son Tim and his family, especially their newborn son, Liam Jeffrey. You can follow their journey and prayer needs at caringbridge.org/visit/babyyoungandfamily.
Throughout this experience, as we have strived to be present, helpful, and supportive in any way we can, it has been my privilege to spend time with my son and just to be “Dad.” Even in this difficult time, it has been a great joy that the Lord has granted us. Though I am a grandfather to his boys, it strikes me that fathering doesn’t stop when the grandkids are born.
How is this idea meaningful to pastors? The most effective way we can disciple children is by discipling their fathers.
Two Thoughts on Training Fathers and Spiritual Fathers
How many resources are dedicated to children’s ministries – a worthy cause – versus men’s ministries? What does this look like? We want to do all we can for the kids, especially when dads are not present or available. But how can we facilitate and devote resources to men’s discipleship in the same way we devote them to children? It’s not a competition, but maybe we need to evaluate our focus.
Are we reinforcing passivity with the way we teach in the church?
I had an experience once visiting a church away from home. It was a men’s event, and the average attendee was over 60. The primary message taught was how and why we should tithe. As I looked around the room, I estimated that at age 60 plus, those men have been giving to the church in some capacity for 40 years or more. With over 80 men in attendance, that’s over 3200 years of giving in the room. Multiply that times the number of Sundays in those years, and that’s over 166,000 drops in the offering plate. It’s just an assumption, I know, but it’s based on reality.
Those men have been faithful church attendees in a thriving, Bible-teaching church for years. Do they need to hear another talk on making sure they give? Or perhaps, do they need to be encouraged to turn around and teach younger men what they already know? Could equipping them to deliver that same message to the younger, up-and-coming leaders and elders in the church be a more worthwhile cause? By training disciplers, the Kingdom is multiplied. We want to equip men to be equippers.
Want to disciple your grandkids? Keep investing in their father. Want to disciple the children in your church? Disciple their dads. Want to multiply discipleship efforts? Equip the seasoned men to disciple the younger. In the same way that grandparents are not the most effective disciplers for children, neither is the church.
Disciple the father because grandfathering is fathering first.
We will not hide them from their descendants; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD, his power, and the wonders he has done. He decreed statutes for Jacob and established the law in Israel, which he commanded our ancestors to teach their children, so the next generation would know them, even the children yet to be born, and they in turn would tell their children. Then they would put their trust in God and would not forget his deeds but would keep his commands.
Noble Warriors Resources
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