How many of you remember the song “Teach Your Children Well” by Crosby, Stills and Nash? Ouch, that is dating those of us who remember. Do you remember how it was in those days? Dad went out to work while mom stayed home and raised the kids. This in of itself was a huge undertaking within the family environment.
Fast forward to today. Economies have changed. Roles have changed. Often times we are seeing women as the main income earners in the family. Women are CEO’s. Women are investors, power brokers, managers and other types of professionals. Women are financially successful. Where are the men and how have their roles along with their responsibilities evolved?
According to Catherine Rampell in the February 5, 2009 issue of the New York Times, “With the recession on the brink of becoming the longest in the postwar era, a milestone may be at hand: Women are poised to surpass men on the nation’s payrolls, taking the majority for the first time in American history”. Ms. Rampell continues on to suggest that this paradigm shift has less to do with gender, but more to do with where the ax is falling.
With this paradigm shift have we seen males stepping up to the plate and taking more prominent roles around the house? Roles such as: cooking, cleaning and taking charge of teaching the children? The article goes on to suggest that men still are not embracing those roles. In defense of men and the way we are programmed to be financial providers, I can see this to a point. However, that is only a small part of the overall picture. We males have a distinct responsibility to our wives and families to stand up and take a leadership role in our homes. That role includes being a “help meet” to our wives. It means that you need to learn how to be an effective participant around the house. Do I need to spell it out guys: Less television, more cooking and cleaning, along with being the “after school teacher?”
How about starting a home-based business along with handling these tasks? What obstacles are preventing you from this level of independent success? Just think about the look on the face of your wife when she comes home to find you and the children cleaning the house along with preparing dinner. Maybe there would be less marriage breakups and more romance if more of these types of activities were carried on. What a concept! Marriage and family life is a team effort. It requires work and commitment. But the real secret is having a daily relationship with Jesus Christ. Bringing your cares and concerns to him on a daily basis. Whenever you put your cares and concerns before Jesus in prayer, He will give you the answers. He will point you to the truth.
This is so important when it comes to raising your children. Fathers have an immense responsibility as the heads of the household to “teach your children well”. Be a mentor to them. Be their guide. Give them encouragement and teach them what is right and wrong. Give them the tools to succeed. The Bible says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6.
Could it be any more clearly defined? As heads of the household, we men need to fully embrace the needs of our families. We need to shake loose the old way of thinking and open ourselves to the reality of life. We need to put our families first and loose the male ego. The world has changed and will continue to evolve. The question is; will you empower yourself to evolve with it? Are you willing to “teach your children well?”