Generally speaking, the importance of our mother’s influence is so naturally understood, that it requires no explanation. Appreciation for the profound impact made by our fathers, however, may not be realized at first.
Perhaps this is at least partly because mothers connect us to home and hearth where we spend our early years, while fathers tend to be our guides into the world at large after we’ve grown a bit.
God made Adam to be a “shaker and a mover” to put it in conventional terms. He was to lead the way in having dominion over the creation, and Eve was specifically designed to help him do just that. Woman was created because what God intended for man, was more than he could accomplish on his own, and also because God’s plan was for them to multiply and fill the earth (Genesis 1 & 2).
When a man becomes a father, he gains a unique opportunity to gain firsthand insight into the experiences of Almighty God.
Even before his children are born, he is filled with hopes for them. He will hurt with them through the bumps, scrapes, skinned knees and sometimes much worse.
Fathers feel frustration along with their kids as they try to learn new skills like walking, riding a bike or making a new friend. In failure, he dries their tears, and in victory, he pays for the celebration party.
Dads struggle to teach their children a degree of ambition and independence that stops short of smug self-sufficiency, and strive to balance giving their children all they can without giving them too much.
Yes, when son or daughter succeeds, so does dad; but he also shares the heartbreak of failure or loss. Mostly though, fathers just keep steadily
plodding along day after day trying their best to meet whatever challenge life will bring.
Whether by design or by default, everyone tends to develop an image of God patterned after their earthly father. Can there be a more important position in life than to be the filter through which your children will see God?
No wonder God teaches us to honor these men to whom he gave responsibilities just like his own. After all, they are our windows into the heart of God’s experience with us.