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It is unfortunate that we live in a world where unborn children are regarded as disposable tissue, a world where media reports of child molestation and abuse are common and child pornography is a highly profitable business.

Sadly, it is an obvious fact that a large percentage of adults have neither understanding nor respect for the sanctity and the value of children.

The Bible speaks of children as being from God, and yet, some parents respond to the news of pregnancy as if it were a sentence to 18 years of hard labor.

No one who has ever raised a child would deny that work is involved, but God intended it to be labor of love! Knowing the Father God, you have to know that if He intended it to be a labor of love, then He also has a plan and a method to accomplish that goal.

Psalm 127:1 says, "Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it: except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain." Notice the comparison God establishes between the home and a city.

Both can be built in vain. Cities in Bible times always had high walls of protection around them, usually two walls, each several feet thick. Watchmen took turns guarding the city while standing on the walls, thereby protecting the inhabitants from enemy attacks. But God is saying here that no matter how strong it is built, or how well protected it appears to be, it is all in vain without His construction and His protection.

A Father's Fortress
There is also a correlation here between a father's role and the city walls. Those walls performed four functions for the city that we as fathers are to perform for our children.

First, the walls protected the city in the event of an attack. Your children need to feel secure in the knowledge that you are their defender; an enemy has to get through you first, and there is no quit in you when it comes to fighting for them and their rights.

Second, those walls provided a platform from which to be constantly vigilant. Dad, you are the one your children need to be able to trust that you are constantly looking out for their best interests in everything, not just in what is most convenient for you.

Third, those walls supported houses all along the inside perimeter. Are you the strong, mainstay support for your household? Are you dependable when the storms of life try to wash over your little tribe? If not, then you need to be. This is not just financial support, although that is included, but it is also emotional support. You need to be there, active in the household when they need you.

Fourth, those walls contained the gates of the city which were the seat of authority for the community. Whether you like it or not, your children need to be able to look at you as the final authority in their lives, under God of course, and be able to trust your judgments implicitly.

The same principle of submission to the Lord in order to be an effective, godly husband applies to your children as well. Your authority over them needs to be rooted and grounded in love and in the wisdom which comes from having spent time with God on their behalf.

Our homes, our families must be built on the love of God, with the foundations set firmly on the Word of God if they are truly to be fortresses God intended them to be, or it is all done in vain.

Source: Man Husband Father by Buddy Harrison.
Excerpt permission granted by Harrison House Publishers

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The online ministry of cfaith has been helping people discover faith, friends and freedom in the Word since 2000. Cfaith provides a unique and comprehensive collection of faith-building resources for the worldwide faith community.

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