Please pray for the Schmidt family as Peter undergoes hip replacement and pray for Crystal Grubb. Crystal has attended our church in the past. She has been diagnosed with cancer, her husband is an unbeliever and Crystal’s faith suffers a great deal from her isolation from the Body of Christ. Also, continue to pray for the families traveling.
May this find you all well.
Filling up the edges
Genesis 2:15 The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.
God wants Adam, the father of mankind to work and to keep. Work has to do with nurture and cultivation, while keeping refers to protection; a man’s duty to be a fortress for his family.
We find a working definition of masculinity right here, in the first few pages of the Bible.
When men take up their responsibilities to nurture and cultivate and the responsibility to protect and guard the fruit of that nurture and cultivation, they are doing something that resonates with their foundational, creational nature.
When they walk away from these responsibilities, in a very real sense they walk away from their assigned masculine identity.
A man has broad shoulders so that he can carry heavy loads. The man who gets u in the middle of night to see what that noise is, isn’t doing it because he has a penis, has one feminist author suggested mockingly.
The father as “provider and protector” is not something man came up with as a pragmatic solution to certain practical problems.
It is not a human invention or tradition, or just a holdover from our hunter/gatherer days. This is an essential part of God’s creation design for Man.
At the beginning these roles were assigned, by God, to the man. Man was placed in the garden with this twofold mandate in mind. This is what men are for.
All men are called, like Adam our first father, to provide for their families and to protect their families.
The fall consisted of sins of omission and commission. Adam ate the fruit but before that he was acting contrary to God’s law, He failed to obey God by inaction.
God said to provide for your wife, so why is she unfed, susceptible to the temptation of Satan to eat? Why is Eve out considering the food of others?
Christ said doing the Father’s will was food. Adam isn’t feeding his wife the filling food.
The serpent steps in and offers Eve food, something Adam failed to do.
Adam was told to keep or guard the garden. Why is Adam standing around letting the snake have his way, tempting, beguiling and leading his wife astray?
Adam’s sins of omission precede sins of commission. We slide into high handed sin. We drift. We begin to fail to do what we ought to do, before we actively do what we ought not.
Do you want to avoid snakes coming into your garden and offering lies and false sustenance to your wife and children? Then feed them.
The little girl who wants attention from grown men. The wife who dresses to please men, not her husband. The wife whose identity is found in anything other than Christ, so she is susceptible to the lies of the world.
Biblical ethics 101: 1 Timothy 5:8 But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
This isn’t a matter of mere economics.
God’s giving is about more than mere necessitates. God made a garden of yes with a single tree of no. God said here are all the trees. Abundance we can hardly imagine. He said fill he world. Just don’t touch this one fruit on this one tree. Be like God, the Father.
God said yes.
So, say yes. Have an orientation toward yes. Toward giving. Toward providing. Give as much as you can, as often as you can.
Kids can be wearisome in their way. Read the bed time book again. Sing the song again. Throw me up in the air again. Again, again , again.
But as Chesterton said in Orthodoxy– “Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again” to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.”
Don’t be a prudish, no-no-no, kill-joy.
Men can handle hardship, but if you want to see what kind of character He has – give a man power. Men will generally bear up under hardship, generally they will – those same men though fall to pieces with power.
A man who is saying no because he can, because he is lording over his children, because he is trying to harden them, instructing them in want and hardship – that is diabolical. This is ungodly. This is evil.
God, the Father gave Adam, Eve and to them he gave a world with all its continents, forests, oceans, etc.
If you are saying no, you should because you are going to say yes to something else, something better.
Your kid wants candy at dinner time. Say “no,” followed by, “because I want to give you this whole table of delicious food.”
Ephesians 5:18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit.
God says “no,” because His “yes,” is richer, more glorious and fuller.
Grace is not sloppy, limp wristed or a door-matish. Grace is disciplined. Grace is firm. Grace is solid.
Grace wants to run a marathon of giving. Not a hundred-yard dash of living.
Pace yourself, say “no,” at times because the “yes,” is so much bigger and better. Don’t be a dad that says “no,” more than he says “yes,” however.
Grace gives. The Father’s love is expressed in giving, not withholding. In open handed pleasure, not tightfisted drudgery.
Your Father withholds nothing from you. Why would you withhold from your children, when it is in your possession to give?
You. Your time. Your praise. Your love. Your hugs. Your money. Your electricity and running water and soda pop. Your time, talents, passions, wisdom and faith and candy.
You are the one with a debit card, a car and the know how to get to the Baskin and Robins. Show them.
Romans 8:32He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?
Grace gives. Grace overflows. Grace provides in abundance. Grace says yes. Faithful fatherhood is a cornucopia of overflowing grace.
In a very good world, unfallen man was told to protect God’s garden. Protect it from what?
Fighting did not bring sin. A failure to fight brought sin. Had war broken out in the garden as it ought to have, it would have remained a perfect world.
Every war since the fall is the fruit of Adam’s passivism. When you fail to protect you are a destroyer.
What does a security guard do? What does a soldier on a post on the front line, do?
A man wants to say yes, but not to snakes. A father wants to say yes, but not to schlubs.
TSA agents are not the same as the Levite armed with swords rushing to Moses side. TSA agents will toss anyone, applying their wooden rules, woodenly. Why are you searching that 90-year-old grandma, TSA agent?
Because I am looking for Islamic terrorists – is the answer. Don’t be a TSA agent. Be a discerning soldier.
Your default position should be Yes to your wife and to your kids but “no,” to things of this world that want access and control over your children.
Public schools? No. Social Media? No. Fortnite? No. Smart phones? No. Sleep overs? No.
Defend your family. You are responsible for who comes into the garden and what message they are trying to teach your wife and kids.
Fathers have to say yes and no. But why are you saying yes to? Why are you saying no? When? Why?
God, the Father, calls you to be like Him – a gracious giver. Man was made to provide and protect what comes into God’s garden.
Be a father who wants to be a worker whose labor overflows in provision for his family – an overflow of yes.
Be a fighter, not because you love fighting, but because you love what you are fighting for. So your protection should overflow with No to the snakes. Which means you need to know the difference between your kids and snakes. Your wife and the enemy. This is precisely where fatherhood breaks down.
Around the web
Powerful questions to change your marriage:
John 12:35So Jesus said to them, “The light is among you for a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you. The one who walks in the darkness does not know where he is going.
What would I be if you were to forsake me? What can I do if you withdraw your hand? What can I know if you do not enlighten me? How quickly the educated become infants; the prudent, simple; the wise, fools! How awesome you are in all your works and judgments! Let me walk in the light while I have light, so that I may not be caught in darkness. Many renounce their faith and become careless and weary in your grace.
They are deceived into thinking the know everything and have no need. They feel satisfied and become slothful and ungrateful and are soon ruined. Therefore, help me to remain in the fervor of faith, that I may daily increase in it through Jesus Christ, my real and only helper.
Confession – Nate
Prayer – TBA
CHURCH POTLUCK PICNIC
June 23 after church. The church will provide water and some chips. Each should bring enough food for his own family plus some to share.
THE CHURCH AT PLANNED PARENTHOOD
Wednesday, June 26, 5:30-6:15PM; 1509 32nd St. Everett 98201