Recently, Kat and I watched the movie Real Steel starring Hugh Jackman. I am pretty sure that Kat agreed to watch the movie because he was in it. Either way, we both loved the movie and by the end of the movie we were both sitting on the edge of our seats cheering on this fighting robot as tears streamed down our cheeks. I know, I know. Big surprise that I was crying but truly this movie gripped your heart and it caused me to reflect about the type of father I want to be.
In the movie, Charlie (Hugh Jackman) was a dead beat dad that tries to make some money off of his kid because the kid’s mother has died and the aunt wants custody. Needless to say, there was a tumultuous relationship between Charlie and his son. During a scene late in the movie after Charlie and his son have started to bond, Charlie asks his son what do you want from me? The son, Max responds by saying, “I just want you to fight for me.”
As I look at broken families all over our country, I see kids just wanting their fathers to fight for them. We see sons without fathers growing up carrying around a deep wound and not understanding what it means to be a man. We see young ladies without the father in her life trying to replace dad with each new guy that comes into her life. When will we as fathers begin to fight for our children. When we will as husbands begin to fight for our marriages? When we will as men of God begin to fight for God?
Our children are crying out, fight for me. Our wives are crying out, fight for me. Our God is crying out, fight for me. Even in the homes where the man is present, we live in a society where it is cooler to work long hours and slave at the office than it is to invest in the relationships that are around us. The ministry field is not exempt to this. I know that many people joke that pastors just work on Sunday but many of us fill long hours with meeting people, counseling, praying, studying and trying everything that we can to reach the lost. We are on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If someone is in the hospital, we drop what we are doing and rush to their side. If someone is having a crisis at 2 in the morning, we leave our beds and counsel the hurting. However, pastors try and use the excuse that they are working for God so being a workacholic and non-existent husband and father is acceptable. I have wondered lately if the reason why so many pastor’s kids are far from God is because the person on the stage talking about God was not the same person that the kids never saw at home.
Last week at the church planting conference that Kat and I attended, we saw Bill Hybels, pastor of Willow Creek Community Church and his family speak. Bill, his wife and kids were speaking because both of Bill’s adult children still love Jesus and serve the local church. Bill became choked up when speaking about how proud he was of his children.
I am choosing to be a present father and a present husband. I am choosing to fight for my wife, for my children and for my God. The question becomes, “Will you?”
P.S. I am writing this blog at the Apple Store at Green Hills because for some reason the IPhone is not water resistant when you go swimming. Not sure why!!!