The Abiding Fathers blog is a collection of works from our founder, Bill Dotson, along with stories from guest bloggers.
When you dress, which are you seeking, comfort of compliments? Maybe it is both? Or does it vary, depending on the circumstances? The fashion and apparel industry spend billions of dollars to influence us. Can you dress comfy and sexy at the same time? Bill, where are you headed with this; what is your point?
Well, there are certain questions that just can’t always be answered in an absolute manner. Like, fathers, are you absent or abiding in your home? Am I doing everything possible to disciple my wife and children? Do I clearly understand the role I have been given from God within my family? What will be the fruit from the legacy I leave? All these and many more! A much greater concern would be—are you even asking these kinds of questions? Do you care? Are they important to you? Yes, no, maybe!
We’ve all heard the Mark Twain quote; “Clothes make the man.” But there is more to this Twainism—“Naked people have little or no influence on society.” Fathers, are you putting on the right clothes, or are you standing naked, having little or no influence on this and the next generation? Let’s take this a step further; one day, standing before the Heavenly Father, you and I will be asked to give an account of our discipleship in our home. If clothing reflects our answer, will we be properly dressed, or stark naked before Him?
Maybe your wardrobe is wearing out, tattered and torn. Possibly, it is time for a complete new wardrobe overhaul, one that reflects a disciple maker. Just maybe, we should begin by taking inventory of what fits and what doesn’t. Time, where and how do we spend it? Time is love! What I do each day with the 24 hours I’ve been given? Do I spend it on myself for both comfort and compliments; or do I purposely spend much of it influencing my family for the kingdom of God? Am I always in my best suits, or is there a part of my wardrobe designed for the various roles of family life? The ones in which I don’t mind getting dirty! For disciple making can be a tough, dirty job. Your hands will get soiled as well as your clothing, but what a great feeling!
What will I wear when I’m spending time in prayer, or in teaching? What am I modeling; new clothes or new insights into the kingdom? Better get some special duds for the times of mentoring and disciplining. So many choices and decisions; what will I wear? There is one set of spiritual garments that is suited for every aspect of life as a husband, father and disciple maker. The “whole armor of God”! You can’t go wrong wearing these at all times. One size fits all! And they are designed for comfort and compliments! Comfort and strength for you and your family and eternal compliments from your Lord! It goes like this—“Well Done, My good and faithful servant!”
It looks like this—
-helmet of salvation
-breastplate of righteousness
-belt of truth
-shoes of the gospel of peace
-shield of faith
-sword of the Spirit, the word of God. (Eph. 6.10-18)
If you want to be an abiding husband and father, able to stand, when the world, your flesh and Satan are trying to take you down, then the full armor of God is necessary, daily clothing. Both for you and all of your family for which you are responsible. But how do I do that, you ask? First through continual prayer, praise, obedience to His word, carrying the crosses that come into your life and being watchful. And all this and more must be done in the Spirit’s power and presence, plus the strength of Christ. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Phil. 4.13). Go it alone, you and the family are doomed for failure; but Christ and His Spirit will not fail. Remember His parting promise? “Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Mt. 28.20b).
Comfort or compliments—neither of these will even matter, but you’ll have both plus so much more when you are all decked out in His garments of armor! Try them on; better still, once you do; never take them off! Your family will spend eternity praising God, and thanking you!!! I can hear Jesus now; “Step into the fitting room—We’ve been waiting for you!”
Bill C. Dotson
Scriptures taken from the New King James Version