Family is Worth Fighting For

In Articles, Family, Father, Husband by Tim Bergmann

Why is family so important and is it worth fighting for?

According to one sociologist, David Brooks, writing for the Atlantic,

When you put everything together, we’re likely living through the most rapid change in family structure in human history.

Nowadays, families can mean single moms or single dads raising kids or sharing the child-rearing responsibilities with an ex.

It can mean remarried couples raising children that aren’t their biological offspring. Or it can mean adoption families, where children come from completely different biological parents.

Not only that, but we live in a culture that recommends other views of the family as acceptable as well. Polygamist families, polyamorous families, and others.

One thing can be certain about all families: they are imperfect.  They involve relationships that are flawed, mistakes that have been made, and remorse that has been felt.

But families are here to stay, and they are the fabric of a stable society.  Scripture highlights some important things about the family.

GIFT FROM GOD

Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him. (Psalm 127:3)

This is how God set up the created order.  He put a man and a woman together, blessed them, and told them to be fruitful and multiply, to have children.  It is no question that raising children is a very difficult endeavor.

Comedian Jim Gaffigan writes, “Raising kids may be a thankless job with ridiculous hours, but at least the pay sucks.”

Despite that, there are many ways to see that children are a gift.  When a young one crawls up in your lap for a story or when a teenager gets their license or when a young adult graduates from university, you are filled with pride and joy that you can’t find anywhere else.  I have six kids and they are an incredible blessing to me even though raising them was the hardest thing I ever had to do.

It’s difficult, but it’s worth fighting for.

CRUCIBLE FOR CHARACTER

As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17)

I have not found a more difficult testing ground than raising kids.  When our kids were young, my wife, Jennifer, and I would look at each other and say, “We are nice people.  People like us.  Why is it that our kids can turn us into absolute ogres?”

Have you ever felt that way?  When you’re out in public, away from your kids, you are the most sane, kind, and engaging person in the room.  But when you are behind closed doors with your kids, you are quick-tempered, frustrated, and exhausted.  You feel like you have no creative solutions to navigate the tempers, the mess, and the complications of raising kids.

I used to pray that the Holy Spirit would fill me for big deals like speaking engagements or music performances. I thought that was where it really mattered. I learned that where I really needed to be filled with the Spirit was at home, with my children, when no one was watching. Those were the essential moments.

Our kids don’t make us evil; they just bring out the brokenness that is already in us.  And as that brokenness is revealed, we can humbly bring it to Jesus and ask Him to conform our character.  As we continue to do that, the Lord Jesus will refine us and make us mature and complete, not lacking anything,

Which is why family is worth fighting for.

LOCATION OF LEGACY

We will not hide them from their descendants;
we will tell the next generation
the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord,
his power, and the wonders he has done. (Psalm 78:4)

Mark Holmen, in his book, Faith Begins at Home, writes,

“As Parents, we pass on things to our children every day. They’re watching us, learning from us, and emulating us. The question is not ARE we passing things on to our children, but WHAT are we passing onto our children.”

We will leave a legacy in the lives of our children, there’s no getting around that, but if we are hoping to leave a great legacy then we need the life of Christ in us.  I know that my legacy won’t last more than two generations.  My dad was a great man but even my son, who was born after dad died, knows nothing about him.  My great grandkids won’t know, and likely won’t care, if I was a hard worker or a sloth, kind or cruel, rich or poor.  And they are my own flesh and blood!

This is why I want to invest in the legacy of Christ.

The very best thing for my children and grandchildren is not for them to read my books or listen to my music or even receive their inheritance.  That won’t carry them through the complexities and difficulties that this life will throw at them.

They need Jesus.
They need Him so that their sins can be forgiven.
They need Him so that they can be transformed into who they were meant to be.
They need Him to help them make sense of whatever chaos their world will be in.
They need Him so that they can have something lasting to pass on to their children.
They need Him so that once this world is done, they can live forever with Him.

Our incredible role as dads is, by the grace of God, to invest in their lives, both through what we say and how we live, so that they can come to know Jesus Christ who created them, loves them, died for them, and has a brilliant idea for their lives.  And this requires the full life of Christ in us.  We can’t do it on our own.  But we can by the power and in the name of Jesus!

 

 

About
Tim Bergmann
Tim Bergmann is the lead pastor at Alliance Community Church in Sylvan Lake, AB. Some of Tim’s favorite things about ministry are being with people and dreaming great big dreams of the future together. He loves how God chooses to work through us even though we are broken and fallen, and how God uses His word to comfort and guide and encourage and convict.
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Tim Bergmann
Tim Bergmann is the lead pastor at Alliance Community Church in Sylvan Lake, AB. Some of Tim’s favorite things about ministry are being with people and dreaming great big dreams of the future together. He loves how God chooses to work through us even though we are broken and fallen, and how God uses His word to comfort and guide and encourage and convict.