Man Up - #3 - The Priesthood of the Godly Man
Priest, loving leader, man of the house, promise-keeper, servant-leader and numerous other phrases and words have been used to describe what a man is to be in his home. I vividly remember one men’s Bible study I conducted when I tried to outline for the men in attendance exactly what the Bible means and doesn’t mean about leadership in the home. One man, with a frown on his face stated that he knew all of this scriptural teaching to be true but then said, “I don’t know how to do this. I want to be that kind of man but I do not know how.”
How does a man become the spiritual priest in his home, the one who mediates his family before God? Is it by having devotions every night? A man with whom I attended seminary visited our home for a weekend when we were students along with his wife and three young girls. My wife and I and our four kids were amazed, impressed and convicted by the dedication of this man to family devotions. He wrote those devotions every day for his kids. He didn’t use Spurgeon Evening and Morning, or the Daily Bread, or Streams in the Desert or My Utmost for His Highest. He wrote his own and faithfully led his kids every night through the Word. You might be saying to yourself , “I cannot do that” and come up with a thousand excuses as to why this cannot be done in your home.
A year later I learned that, one day while his wife was teaching in the Christian school their kids attended this “minister of the Gospel” left his family and ran off with his secretary and her five children just like that. Without a word he abandoned his home, his faithful wife and their beautiful kids.
I am not saying that having family devotions is wrong. But making it a form of legalistic acrobatics is wrong. There is much more to being a servant-leader than having devotions. Oh yes, right now I am tempted to make a list of practical ways in which you can lead your family. But that would only be MY list. Once again our model is Jesus. He loved His disciples and they knew it. When my mother-in law went home to be with Jesus she left a legacy of over 100 children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Every one of them was convinced that they were her favorite. How could this be? Simple - she loved her disciples!
The mark of true servant-leadership is best characterized by something an old preacher once told me when I first started preaching 45 years ago. He said there are three rules to being an effective and successful pastor. With pen in hand and bated breath I waited for this gold mine of wisdom. He said, “Rule #1 is to love the people. Rule #2 is to love the people. And rule #3 is to love the people.” Man of God, do you truly love your disciples? Do they know it? Is each of them convinced that they are your favorite?
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