Real Men (3)

A real man loves his children. In relating to them, he imitates God, who is "merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. He will not always strive with us, nor will He keep his anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor punished us according to our iniquities… As a father pities his children, so the LORD pities those who fear Him" (Psalm 103:8-9,13). Like God the Father, he teaches his children. He tells them about God and how to know and serve Him. He instructs them in what is right and wrong. With his greater experience, he imparts wisdom about how to live in this world. Just as God provides for us, so a real man happily meets the physical needs of his children. He delights to give them good things. He does not squander his money on entertainment, luxuries, status symbols, gambling, or risky speculation. He works hard at his job and manages his household well, with the help of his wife, so that the family’s needs are met. At all times, however, he trusts in God to provide, knowing that his own skill and strength are limited. In one way, however, he does not imitate the Lord. God is always just, but we are not. When he is wrong or makes a mistake, bringing unnecessary pain or shame to his children, a real man admits his error and asks forgiveness. He can do that because he feeds his own soul daily upon the manifold grace of God as he reads the Bible and goes to the Father in prayer. "Therefore, be imitators of God, as beloved children" (Ephesians 5:1).