Proverbs 27.23 tells us to know the state of your flocks, and put your heart into caring for your herds.
This is good, solid practical advice for everyone in leadership. God tells us that our first priority as leaders should be our people. For fathers this means knowing how our wife and children are doing then doing those things that will make their lives easier and better.
To do this well, fathers must take time to be with their wife and children. Work cannot be a father’s highest priority. The state of a father’s family must be his highest priority. This doesn’t diminish the importance of work it just places it in its proper priority.
Helpful for understanding this truth is to watch our parents grow old. What matters most when they are in their 80’s and 90’s is their relationship with their family. Those who are loved have family with them and caring for them but those who ignored their family when they were young find themselves alone to contemplate their final days in regret with sadness.
Regrettably this latter group is increasing the result of living self-centered lives where divorce was rampant. It seemed pleasurable to changes wives and live for personal glory when they were in their 30’s, 40’s and even 50’s but now there is no one who stands with them in their 80’s and 90’s and so they die alone.
God warns us by commanding us fathers to put our hearts into caring for our family. Giving our best time, talent and treasure when they are young is an investment in our future not to mention theirs. Healthy well loved children will produce healthy well loved grandchildren and they will be with us to comfort and care for us when we reach our 80’s and 90’s.
Self-centered parenting has been the norm far too long with terrible results. Pushing children off to school, church and sports programs rather than embracing and building personal relationships has resulted in too many children lost and wandering for meaningful relationships.
The best thing fathers can do for themselves, their church and their country is to know well their family then give their hearts to caring for them.