Monday, August 16, 2010

Father's Day 2010: Building a Godly House

A man walked out of his truck, into the hardware store, and asked “Can I get some 4 X 2’s?” the lady at the counter said, “Excuse me? Don’t you mean 2 X 4’s?” The man shook his head, “No, I mean 4 X 2’s.” She shook her head, “I think you mean 2 X 4’s” The confused man held up his finger, and went back to his truck, talked with the guys in the truck for a few minutes, and then came back to the store. He said, “Yeah, I mean 2 X 4’s.” the lady asked, “How long do you need ‘em?” The man replied, “We’re gonna need ‘em for a loooooong time.”

I wouldn’t want to go near that house they were building, would you? God has guidelines for building a spiritual house in your home. Fathers, believe it or not, have a huge role to play in building a Godly house.
Fathers need direction, help on how to love their wives handle their kids. You want them to grow up right, be godly, think of you as Superman. This Bible tells you how to do that

The Bible gives us a foundational verse in Joshua 24:15, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
The Bible also gives us Framing verses, in Deuteronomy 6:4, which are repeated in the Old and New Testaments in different ways. Let’s read Deuteronomy 6:4–9 (READ IT)

Today you’ll finish reading this with parts for building a Godly house. Just as a physical house has the frame, the interior, and the exterior (pardon my overly simplistic reference, it makes good preaching) so spiritually you want that for your house.
The first section of your house found in Deuteronomy 6 is this: Your Identity should be to love God and obey God with everything you are. Fathers are supposed to love God with every part of their lives (READ 6:4-6). Heart and soul communicate in Hebrew the mental and emotional, the conscious and the unconscious, the entire non-physical part of you. That means you should be loving God with your thoughts, your feelings, your plans, your ideas, your jokes, what you listen to, and what words you use. It should be your identity.
In the Riverside service baptism, those of us who went into the mighty Pec came out drenched. After changing into new clothes, those of us who passed out water bottles in the parade did so during a downpoor! Drenched! Many of us experienced this! Just as if you came out of a river or a clean bath, so you should be drenched with God and His commandments.
Is that true of you? Or do you love something more than God?
Your identity should reflect your title of “Christian.” Tom Landry said when he was coach of the Dallas Cowboys, that the first quality they looked for in every athlete they drafted was character. If character wasn’t there, then it didn’t matter how talented or big the player was, their bad character would eventually ruin everything else.
Christian fathers, is your character godly? When you’re alone, are you God’s man? Is God a part of your Sunday ritual, or is God always the one making your decisions?
Build a Godly house. Your Identity should be to love God and obey God with everything you are.

If you have never surrendered yourself to God—this is first. Prime Directive. Numero Uno. Put down the housebuilding tools and step away from the foundation. You need to start over, because without God your house will definitely fall. The Bible says “Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it.” You need to make sure you have believed in Jesus’ giving his life for your sin, and you own that sin, and you own that death and resurrection, and God will live in you and give you the ability to love and obey Him. If you’re trying to obey God or love God without knowing Jesus Christ, you are chasing your tail! If you are trying to build a Godly house without following Jesus Christ, your house will fall down. So rebuild the foundation starting with following Jesus' teachings.

Now to the interior of your Godly house. Your impression on your children should be for them to follow your example and love and obey God. You need to Immerse them in God’s ways. (READ 6:7-9). Fathers are supposed to immerse their children in God’s commandments. It means in every aspect of your life, fathers, you are supposed to speak to and demonstrate obedience and submission to God. That means telling your kids why you do what you do. Why do you bring your kids to church Sundays? Why don’t you watch dirty movies on TV (besides your wife getting mad at you)? Why do you pray before you eat? Why do you read your Bible? Why do you cry when we’re singing about what Jesus Christ did on the cross for your sin? Tell your kids.
I'm not just saying this, but trying to do this myself and it's hard sometimes. But we keep trying. When I was trying to tell my daughter about her need to follow Jesus and find salvation in Him, I brought up the truth about hell. After she understood what hell was, and who ends up there, she was silent for a long time. Then she said, “I don’t want to go to hello.” After I tried clarifying, "No, it's called 'hell,'" she paused again, then said, "I don't want to go to hell today." I'm not perfect, but like you men who are trying, so I'm trying too to explain God's fingerprints in creation as we are walking and talking about animals and plants, stars, moon, and how God made it all.
Notice “Hear o Israel!” this is not just for fathers, but this is something parents do together.
Wives, let the father lead, and don’t quit when he starts. Why should the father lead? A) if you lead, the man won’t participate; B) your kids need to see their father’s faith to help increase their chances of having a stronger faith. (Pause while I receive the stones from the angry ones, thinking I'm neanderthal--to those I urge you to research a father's presence for adolescents and its influence in adult children. You'll agree with me that the role of a father is the single most important factor in a child becoming an emotionally healthy person).
The best way you can teach your kids God’s love is by loving them.

How do kids spell L.O.V.E.? T.I.M.E.
And train your children without anger! Resist that temptation! Go outside and have a stress break (like smoke break)—but leave if you’re about to blow!
The Bible says to leave your father and mother and cleave to your wife, and sometimes you have to leave your children or else you feel like cleaving them alright! Ephesians 6:1-4 (READ IT) Without anger. Colossians 3:21 also says, “Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.”
Love your children.
A Spanish father and son had a terrible, argumentative relationship. The son finally ran away. The father searched and searched for him, but couldn’t find him. Finally he put an ad in the paper, saying, “Dear Paco, meet me in front of this newspaper office at noon on Saturday. All is forgiven. I love you, your Father.” On Saturday at noon, Paco showed up. So did 800 other men named Paco, all looking for forgiveness and love from their fathers.
Do you get what God wants for you as a father? To love Him and demonstrate that to your children.

We've got the foundation and frame, the interior, and now the exterior. Yes! That means landscaping (my forte). Your impression on the world should be for them to follow your example and love and obey God too. Fathers are supposed to publicly show their love for God and obedience to Him. READ 6:8-9) What does that mean? All of those external markings and symbols mean one thing; that is a public reminder to yourself and a public testimony that God owns you, and you belong to Him.
Like signing your name to the title to a vehicle, or some people tattoo their lover’s name on their arm—it shows ownership and faithfulness!
This means fathers should not set the example that your love and obedience to God are things to be ashamed of.
Like the flower must open up in order to spread pollen and reproduce itself, so you must man up in order to see your children one day follow God!
Men, will you build a Godly house? Or will you refuse God's power and try it on your own?

in Jesus,

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