Have you ever heard a parent say “do as I say and not as I do”? The truth is that our children learn little from what we say to them but learn volumes from what we do. Human development is imitative by nature, i.e., our children “do as we do and not as we say”. If you are a mother or father, your children will likely become like you whether you like it or not. So then, let’s make sure we are proud of who we are so we can then be proud of who they become.
Today’s Bible or Not quote deals with how a father should treat the mother of his children, and the impact it will have. Although it sounds like something out of Proverbs, and has a Biblical basis, it is not a Bible quote or verse.
“The most important thing a father can do for his children is love their mother”. – Theodore Hesburgh, American Priest
As we teach our children by our examples I have often wondered what example could make the best, or most impressionable, impact. The American cleric Theodore Hesberg was convinced that the way a father treats a mother was huge, and I have to agree. Here are a few of the obvious benefits to a child:
• Provides a home built on love
• Provides a zone of security and safety
• Demonstrates daily what love is, and what it is not
• Helps them to develop the capacity to love
• Provides stability: emotionally, naturally and spiritually
The Bible teaches the husband to love his wife, as Christ loves the Church (Ephesians 5:25). That love is unconditional, unwavering, undying and sacrificial. If you as a father were to love your wife, the mother of your children, in this way, I guarantee that you will be the proud parent of happy, well adjusted and loving children.
Alternatively, the Bible also teaches that God will “visit the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me” (Exodus 20:5). I don’t believe this means God places a curse on the children because of the sins of the father, I believe it means tha the children learn by example and become like the father, thus perpetuating sinful lives from generation to generation unless the cycle is broken by some miracle.
Fathers, love the mothers of your children, and mothers, love the fathers of your children. It is the most important thing you can do.