Does it have anything to do with fathers? That is the question that comes to my mind with the increasing number of shootings in our nation and in our neighbor nation to the south.
Poverty, broken marriages and abuse (both physical and mental) are typically named as the culprits for these acts of violence and heinous crimes, but psychologists point out that most children coming from similar backgrounds don’t commit these crimes. So, my question stands; does it have anything to do with fathers?
A few years ago a report stated that in the last three decades, in the United States, there has been a 550% increase in violent crime, 400% increase in illegitimate births, 200% increase in teen pregnancies and 300% increase in teen suicides. It adds that 70% of juveniles in reform institutions come from fatherless homes and the report insists that there is a direct correlation between these statistics and the lack of affirmative father figures in homes.
If the absence of a father figure produces such negative results, would it not follow that a consistent, healthy fatherly presence should generate positive results?
There is a dramatic and touching story of a loving father found in Mark 5:21-23 & 35-43. The man’s name was Jairus and his 12-year-old daughter was dying.
Jairus was a ruler in the local Jewish synagogue…a prestigious position, yet on behalf of his daughter he found Jesus and in great humility, “…fell at His feet and begged Him earnestly, saying, “My little daughter lies at the point of death. Come and lay Your hands on her, that she may be healed, and she will live” (Mark 5:22,23). One of the names for God in the Old Testament is “Jehovah Shammah” meaning, the God who is there. In godly fashion, Jairus was certainly there for his daughter!
By the time Jesus arrived the little girl had passed away and a group of people were already mourning. However, Jesus told those present that, “The child is not dead, but sleeping”.He was ridiculed for this comment but undaunted He, along with the girl’s mother and father, went into the house. Jesus said, “Little girl, I say to you, arise”. A grieving father and mother were amazed and overjoyed as their daughter was raised from death to full health.
Imagine the powerful, constructive and lasting impact that this father had upon his daughter. As the story of her healing was recounted over the years she probably made statements like, “Daddy, you mean you loved me so much that you kneeled before the Lord and begged for me?”
Yes – it has a lot to do with fathers! Homes don’t need a man in the house … they need a father!
FAITH & REFLECTION