Dad Advice that Really Matters
Introduction: A world in need of Fatherly advice.
- There is no doubt in my mind that we live in a world in need of fatherly wisdom.
- I’m not casting blame, but I’m admitting a fact.
- Young, old, boys, and girls, we need godly wisdom from godly fathers and men and, of course, women.
- Today, we look at a passage from Proverbs.
- The man who wrote Proverbs was a lousy husband and father.
- Solomon was the smartest and wisest man who ever lived but an absolute bust at home.
- Yet God used him to record the Heavenly Father’s heart for His children to grow up wise, whole, and mature.
- The first 9 chapters of Proverbs include incredible advice from a father to his son.
- Each segment begins with the phrase, “my son.”
- Originally, it was probably meant to be advice from Solomon to one of his sons on how to be a wise and godly king.
- But the wisdom in these chapters is extremely applicable and appropriate to all of us.
- The advice that follows serve as guardrails that, when followed, keep men and woman heading in God’s path.
- Because God orders the steps of a righteous person, these are the steps that are included in our journey.
- Regardless of your age or gender, these verses serve as incredible advice from our Heavenly Father to us, his children.
- Today, we look at 6 words of wisdom we all need.
Proverbs 3:1–12 (CSB)
3 My son, don’t forget my teaching,
but let your heart keep my commands;
2 for they will bring you
many days, a full life,, and well-being.
3 Never let loyalty and faithfulness leave you.
Tie them around your neck;
write them on the tablet of your heart.
4 Then you will find favor and high regard
with God and people.
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not rely on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways know him,
and he will make your paths straight.
7 Don’t be wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord and turn away from evil.
8 This will be healing for your body,
and strengthening for your bones.
9 Honor the Lord with your possessions
and with the first produce of your entire harvest;
10 then your barns will be completely filled,
and your vats will overflow with new wine.
11 Do not despise the Lord’s instruction, my son,
and do not loathe his discipline;
12 for the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
just as a father disciplines the son in whom he delights.
1. Listen to godly teaching and instruction. 1-2
3 My son, don’t forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commands; 2 for they will bring you many days, a full life,, and well-being.
- There is so much advice out there today on every conceivable topic.
- All of the advice has a similar purpose:
- To fix something that is wrong and make life better.
- My YouTube feed is full of advice to help me be a better guitar player.
- How to be a better handgun shooter.
- How to wake up earlier and get more done or read more books.
- Even the videos that are demonstrating or reviewing products have the purpose of selling me one more thing so that my life will be just a little bit better.
- The world is looking for answers, specifically on how to make their life or some part of it better.
- But it seems most people are not looking for solid, biblical advice that extends our days, gives us full life, and impacts our well-being.
- We live in a world desperate to live their best lives while rejecting the source of real life.
- The teachings found in Scripture lead us to Jesus, and Jesus is the Truth and the Life.
- Furthermore, when we practice biblical wisdom we find what the world is looking for: “2 many days, a full life,, and well-being.”
- So why doesn’t the world choose God’s advice?
- A better question:
- Why don’t people who claim to be Christians follow biblical wisdom?
- What if the problem we have today is not so much a problem of disobedience but ignorance?
- We don’t know what we don’t know.
- We can’t forget teachings we’ve never received.
- I was talking last week with some friends who work on college campuses as Christian missionaries.
- They were talking about the struggles faced by incoming freshmen.
- Some of the biggest struggles 18-20 years face are related to normal, everyday life.
- How to do laundry, the need to eat when you are hungry, and other basic tenants of adulthood.
- College campus missionaries are having to teach young men and women:
- How to have actual conversations,
- How to make phone calls for appointments.
- Basic Financial stewardship and budgeting.
- Is it possible that we have educated a generation to calculus but failed to teach them how to be productive adults?
- The reality is that they don’t know because they weren’t taught.
- There is a difference between teaching someone and doing it for them.
- One produces productive adults or disciples, and the other produces consumers.
- We live in a day and time when we desperately need parents and adults who are engaged in teaching and passing on wisdom.
- This has ALWAYS been the calling of adulthood,
- To pass on wisdom, instruction, and lessons in righteousness.
- For all of the adults in the room, whether physical parents or spiritual parents, let me encourage you to remain gentle and patient when people ask you to teach them or answer questions.
2 Timothy 2:24 (CSB) 24 The Lord’s servant must not quarrel, but must be gentle to everyone, able to teach, and patient…
- I’m afraid we have raised a generation that asks Google and YouTube all of the questions.
- Why? The world is asking Google and YouTube because they are always patient and available.
- To teach and disciple, you must be available and patient.
- We all must model listening and obeying the Lord’s teaching and instructions.
- The best way to teach is to model.
- Let’s live an example before others that demonstrate the blessing of following Jesus.
2. Value loyalty and faithfulness. 3-4
3 Never let loyalty and faithfulness leave you. Tie them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart. 4 Then you will find favor and high regard with God and people.
- If I were to describe America today, loyalty and faithfulness would not be at the top of my list.
- Whether it is loyalty and faithfulness to the country, to family, to workplaces, or church, it doesn’t seem like people are as loyal and as faithful as they used to be.
- Yet, loyalty and faithfulness are necessary for healthy communities and relationships.
- When we are loyal and faithful, we experience favor with God and people.
- I don’t know about you, but I want favor.
- I want God to look favorably upon me.
- I also want the community to see me as someone trustworthy, dependable, and consistent.
- Loyalty and faithfulness are missing today among all generations.
- Before we lay this problem at the feet of young people, listen to what the statistics are showing about church attendance:
- “Patterns in church attendance show that people over 40—that is, Gen X and baby boomers—are at least as likely to stop attending church as millennials and Gen Z.”
- But according to Barna, some of the biggest declines in church attendance over the past three decades have been among adults 55 and older.
- We all share the responsibility of teaching and modeling loyalty and faithfulness.
- Model loyalty and faithfulness at home by loving your family consistently and constantly.
- Model loyalty and faithfulness by working when you should work, resting when you should rest, and playing when you should play.
- Model loyalty and faithfulness by putting down roots in the church and worshipping even when you do not feel like it.
3. Trust in the Lord. Vs. 5-6
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways know him, and he will make your paths straight.
- This Proverb speaks to the importance of full devotion to God.
- Trust the Lord with all your heart.
- In all your ways, know Him.
- The key to living our life for Jesus is to give it to Him fully.
- This begins not with our actions but with our thoughts and intentions.
- Where our heart goes, our feet follow.
- Our problem is that we act like we know better than God or, at least, we know better what to do.
- But my understanding is faulty.
- My understanding leads me astray and gets me lost.
- But when I follow the Lord’s understanding and follow His leading, He makes our paths straight.
- Each of us has the responsibility of pointing others to the Truth, which is Jesus.
- The best legacy you can leave for your kids is not a financial inheritance.
- The best legacy is to model how to trust the Lord with all of your heart and to know Him.
- This is easier said than done, but a few practical steps to not rely on your own understanding:
- Pray about it.
- Consult Scripture.
- Avoid the easiest roads (the high road is usually hardest).
- Pray again.
4. Don’t be wise in your own eyes. Vs. 7-8
7 Don’t be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and turn away from evil. 8 This will be healing for your body, and strengthening for your bones.
- In other words, to be arrogant and don’t be a know it all.
- Axiom: If you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room.
- Axiom: All the people in the room are smarter than any individual.
- This makes sense, but notice the reason!
- This will be healing for your body and strength in your bones.
- Fear of the Lord and turning away from evil is the only way to reverse the curse of death.
- Earthly wisdom and knowledge is not enough to reverse the curse.
- All the best minds and all the advice in Google cannot bring life, healing, or internal strength.
- But the fear of the Lord brings life and healing.
5. Honor the Lord with your possessions. 9-10
9 Honor the Lord with your possessions and with the first produce of your entire harvest; 10 then your barns will be completely filled, and your vats will overflow with new wine.
- I feel as if this advice is particularly aimed at us men.
- Generally, women are not as strongly motivated by possessions or items, although diamond rings never hurt.
- But guys love our possessions.
- There are two realities here.
- All of us men have enough “toys”.
- But we would buy more if we could.
- There is always something new, improved, better, handier, or prettier for us to pursue.
- This pursuit is both fun and unfulfilling.
- Scripture doesn’t tell us not to have possessions but to honor God with them:
- If we honor God with our possessions and our tithe, we don’t do without.
- Instead, God blesses what remains.
- One of the most powerful prayers any man can pray is, “Here I am, and here is my stuff!”
- One of the great tests of faith that God asks from all of us is to tithe.
- Tithing is giving the first 10% of your income to the Lord through the Church.
- The rest is yours.
- Tithing and giving does a few things for us.
- Tithing is an act of worship, as we give of what cost us to the Lord for His work.
- Tithing keeps possessions from controlling us.
- Tithing honors God.
- Tithing brings God’s blessing upon the remainder.
- The father in Proverbs taught his son to tithe because he wanted him to be blessed.
- I want to teach you this because I want you to be blessed.
6. Do not despise the Lord’s instructions. 11-12
11 Do not despise the Lord’s instruction, my son, and do not loathe his discipline; 12 for the Lord disciplines the one he loves, just as a father disciplines the son in whom he delights.
- We do not teach or discipline people we don’t care about.
- To teach is to share life with someone through the sharing of information.
- To discipline is to inflict pain on both parties so that the lesser party may achieve his or her best.
- Teaching and discipline are expressions of love.
- For the son or daughter, we can’t accept God’s instruction if we do not accept His discipline.
- When you sign your kid up for sports, you are entrusting your child to a coach to instruct and teach them and discipline where appropriate.
- If the rule is to run laps for being late for practice, then your kid needs to run for being late.
- The role of the coach is to bring the most out of the player, and that involves discipline and instruction.
- Same is true for pastors.
- The good news is that you all have a choice regarding what church you attend.
- Within that choice, you have to be willing to accept a pastor’s teaching and, when necessary, discipline.
- Every time I’ve told a parent about an incident involving your kid, almost all of you have responded, “We wouldn’t bring our kids here if we didn’t trust you.”
- We can’t cling to Jesus’ teaching and reject His discipline.
- Please do not despise the Lord’s instructions or His discipline.
- We despise them to our detriment.
Close: As we close, I believe the best thing we can do this morning is to pray for the men in the room.
- I’m not going to ask you to come from the front, but I would like to ask every male to stand where you are.
- I want to pray with you and for you.
- Let’s Pray
- Would everyone stand!