Fathers – You are the shepherd of your children’s souls!

I have learned through experience that it is in the best interest of parents to carefully and continually observe the spiritual state of their children. We have been given a great responsibility to raise our children for God. Can this really be done if we don’t pay close attention to them?

Last Father’s Day, my children sang a song for me. It was put to the tune of “Savior Like a Shepherd Lead Us.” Here are the words.

Father, like a shepherd lead us,
Much we need thy tender care;
In thy pleasant pastures feed us,
For our use thy home prepare.
Blessed Father, Blessed Father,
Thou wast giv’n us, thine we are.

We are thine; do thou instruct us;
Be the guardian of our way;
Keep thy flock; from sin defend us;
Seek us when we go astray.
Blessed Father, Blessed Father,
Hear thy children when we play.

Early let us seek thy favor;
Early let us do thy will;
Blessed Lord and earthly Father,
With God’s love our bosoms fill.
Blessed Father, Blessed Father,
Thou hast loved us, love us still.

– Children’s version of “Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us”

Needless to say, it touched my heart deeply. What a joy it was to hear their sweet voices, asking me through beautiful song, to shepherd their souls! I believe that this is the desire of all children, that their father would love them like a good shepherd. The Lord Jesus tells us what it means to be a good shepherd.

I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.
John 10:11 (KJV)

This verse is set in the context of a shepherd, protecting his sheep from thieves and robbers.

The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy
John 10:10a (KJV)

The purpose of the enemy is to destroy our children! It is against this that we have to maintain constant vigilance. Jesus compares the good shepherd to an hireling. The hireling flees when trouble comes. This can take many forms, but let’s consider one form you may not have thought about.

What do you do when you sense something is not right with your child? You would know this if you are a careful observer of your child’s soul. Do you approach your child with firm love? Or, do you let it go, hoping that it will go away. “It’s just a stage he is going through.” “All teenagers are like that!” “She is just tired. I’m sure it will pass.” It can be easy to justify a behavior or attitude, rather than addressing it and getting to the heart of the matter. Don’t make excuses! Take action!

You may ask, “How do I take action?” I have found that this is a matter, first of all, for prayer. You must seek God’s guidance, wisdom, and leading. You also must be absolutely calm and in control. Remember, you are approaching you beloved child in order to find out what is wrong. It is a heart matter and this matter is very dear to the child. Whatever it is that your child is struggling with, you as the parent must help them to get it in the open.

This can be a time of great blessing and instruction. It must not be delayed or ignored! There is no more tender a time than when a child confesses to you what is on their heart. It should be a cleansing time where the weight of the world is lifted from their shoulders. It should be a time that brings you and your child closer together. It won’t happen, if you are not diligent in the care of your flock.

Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, and look well to thy herds.
Proverbs 27:23 (KJV)

Take the time to carefully and continually observe the spiritual state of your children. Then, be a good shepherd to them, like the Lord Jesus is to you.

God Bless, Mike

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