Chances are, one of your sons, a nephew or someone you mentor is a single father. Perhaps they are, because of sinful, stupid choices they made, or their former spouse or girlfriend made. But, however they got to be single fathers, the only true victims are the children. 43% of children in the U.S. are without a father in the home. (U.S. Dept. of Census)
The purpose of this blog isn’t to rail against the statistics, but to provide you with something to say to the single dad in your life that can significantly improve their children’s chances of growing up to be more spiritual and responsible adults. And surprisingly, it’s encouraging them to be more respectful of their mother.
The rest of this blog, with some minor edits and additions, was written by a good friend of mine, Matt Haviland. He’s a single father and the founder of, A Father’s Walk, a ministry to single fathers. (http://afatherswalk.wix.com/a-fathers-walk). Listen to this guy!
In 1992, only two years after the fall of communism, I was sitting in a huge soccer stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, surrounded by screaming fans. The Russian team, the national champion, was getting beat by the Ukraine team and the crowd was going crazy.
At the time, I was president of the John Guest Evangelistic Team, and John had been invited to give a 10 minute “religious talk” at half-time. I could not imagine how he was going to pull that off. The fans were there for soccer, not religion. (Perhaps you have children or grandchildren who have the same problem!)
As John began to speak, God silenced the stadium. It was eerie and surreal.
A decade ago, Bob Buford wrote a wonderful book called Half-time. In it, he begs Christian men and women approaching middle age, to think past earthly success and leisure, and to live the second half of their life for significance. But if you blew past that milestone and are still cranking it out in the marketplace or are now retired, and you think you missed your chance you’re wrong!
I’m 67 now, and statistically 3/4 of my way through life. Millions of Christian men, baby boomers they call us, are facing the last 1/4 of life and if we’re not careful, we’ll end up like so many, simply killing time pleasantly in warm places. A wasted life!
Here’s how to make sure you finish strong.
We found out recently that an adult member of our church had intentionally touched a child sexually, and repeatedly. As an elder, I was called in. It was my first experience with this sin, but sadly, our church has dealt with it several times before. I’m grateful this incident did not, to the best of my knowledge, happen on our property, or by a member of our staff. Nevertheless, it has destroyed a marriage, damaged a child and permanently sullied the reputation of the perpetrator.
So, what should a church do to make this sin less likely to occur, and how should they deal with it, if and when it does?