F – Forgiveness. God designed relationships to start with grace. As our Heavenly Father extends forgiving grace so we might know His love, so we look to earthly fathers for love and grace.
A – Accountability. God is a gracious Father but not a jolly pushover. Likewise, loving father’s provide guidance and accountability.
T – Teacher. Father’s instruct and inspire us to learn and become all that God designed us to become.
H – Helper. A father’s help is willing to stoop and serve alongside you in the small tasks or significant troubles.
E – Endures. A father’s steadfast love endures forever. He is tireless in provision and tenacious in compassion.
R – Refuge. No matter how far we have run or how much we have done, we can always come home to our father.
Today’s topic on In The Ring: Honoring. In this message we want to honor fathers with a brief text in Proverbs 23:22-26 and the testimony of 3 individuals. In a moment, our panel of fathers will come up to discuss their story and encourage others in faith, hope, and love. So, let’s turn our attention to God’s word as an introduction to two realities for spiritual champion families.
22 Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.
23 Buy truth, and do not sell it; buy wisdom, instruction, and understanding.
24 The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice; he who fathers a wise son will be glad in him.
25 Let your father and mother be glad; let her who bore you rejoice.
26 My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my ways.
Spiritual champion fathers love by listening.
The proverb author exhorts the child to listen to father and mother. Parents can spend money on nice clothes, big houses, luxury cars, material possessions, and other entertainment experiences. But the greatest gifts they can give their children are “truth, wisdom, instruction, and understanding.” These gifts are worth more than gold and are priceless.
Illus: In 1816, a young French physician named Rene´ Laennec fashioned a cylinder from a sheet of paper and used it to examine a patient. He discovered that internal sounds could be isolated and amplified through a tube, making examinations less intrusive and easier to interpret. This exciting discovery paved the way for the modern-day version of the stethoscope. Doctors use this instrument daily because they’ve learned that listening well is a powerful tool for healing.
If parents expect their children to listen, then they must model listening to their children. More and more, listening is becoming a lost art. People would rather talk than listen, and win arguments than make a difference. Being heard takes honest two-way convo.
- Listen not just with your ears but your eyes. Give your children undivided attention. Dads, the present your children want from you is fullness of your presence; and not just your children, but your spouse and other relationships.
Spiritual champion fathers lead by living righteously.
When it’s all said and done and your life comes to its end, the question will not be about how much is in your retirement; not how much left in your mortgage, nor how many degrees or dollars you have to your name. Instead, people will remember you based you’re your character and service to others.
24 The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice; he who fathers a wise son will be glad in him. 25 Let your father and mother be glad; let her who bore you rejoice. 26 My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my ways.
- The imitable life is the yielded life to Jesus.
The imitable life is the yielded life to Jesus.Tweet
Panel: Bob Danton, Jason Montagne, Wendell Smith
- Introduce yourself, salvation testimony, and how long been part of SPBC family.
- What Bible verse or passage has profoundly shaped your life? Explain why.
- What is your favorite hymn / worship song? Explain why.
- How would you define a godly man/father?
Share 1-3 characteristics.
- What are 1-2 challenges that men face and how does the Bible address them?
- Who has been a role model (to help you deal with challenges) for you as a man / husband / father? How do you seek to be a role model for other young men? How can we do this better as a church?
- What would you say to someone who doesn’t know Jesus as Savior & Lord yet?
We close not by walking away merely saying, “those are nice stories.” We close by reflecting on our own story…
- For what are you grateful? This is certainly a day to express gratitude to dads, surrogate dads, mentors, and family.
- How are you growing and giving faith, hope, and love to others? God has called men to a unique responsibility and stewardship.
Thank you for these men and the way You have worked grace and good in their life. We ask that their story would encourage others toward humility and hope in the Lord. We thank God for the fathers and men in our life who point us to the Heavenly Father. We ask for grace and healing for wounds that linger. And we ask for that same grace to help us to overcome a past and move us forward to overcome bitterness and become better than we were yesterday. May we leave any bitterness or past sin at the cross, and today become a fresh start in our legacy as a spiritual champion with Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord. Amen.