"Watch out!" Jack yelled as he once again grabbed the wheel. But Sarah's hands, white knuckled, still gripped it as she swung back across the lane to the right, again overcorrecting and veering them off the road on the other side. The rapid thumping of the road deflectors under the tires was immediately replaced by the sound of the guardrails scraping along the side of their van. Jack flinched as a road sign ripped off the right, sideview mirror. All three of their children in the back seat began crying hysterically as the car sped towards a sharp turn in the road, where a single railing was the only thing keeping them from plummeting over a dirt embankment.
"Let go, Sarah! I got it!" Everything went into slow motion. Jack, in shock, turned to his wife, who was pale white with a look of intense fear in her eyes, hands fused to the wheel as she and her husband both fought - almost against each other - to control the cars path. His eyes darted up to the rearview mirror to see the panic-stricken faces of the children he loved more than anything in the world. Reality began settling into Jack's mind: he had fallen asleep at the wheel. He knew he was the reason why his entire family was about to die. But he also knew that the cause of their current crisis was the key to their potential rescue...himself.
With a knee-jerk reaction, Jack hit the brakes, sending the van sliding on the pavement, throwing everyone's body forward, locking their seatbelts around them like a vise. Burning out the tires, the van screeched to a halt within inches of the guardrail overlooking the long drop-off. As everyone rocked backward and into their seats, Jack starred over the hood in shock at the catastrophe his family had been mere seconds from experiencing.
His wife and kids were speechless. Jack sat silently, repressing an emotional rush of guilt mixed with relief. Sarah unlocked her seatbelt, wrapped her arms around him and buried her head into his chest, sobbing in relief. His children also continued to cry as Jack whispered, "I'm sorry; I'm so sorry" - over and over again.
Fear. Gratitude. Trauma. Prayer. Sarah cycled through every emotional response in her system. She was still a mess, very slowly pulling herself back together. Then finally, with her heart-rate returning to normal and the color returning to her face, she looked up at Jack through tear-filled eyes and whispered words he would never forget: "Please don't ever do that again." - (taken from: The Resolution for Men)
This story illustrates where I believe countless men are today...and where I have been; Disengaged, asleep at the wheel and drifting. We have been given the position of leadership over our families and have been placed in the driver's seat. However over time, we have been lulled into a dream by our own passivity and the lies of a culture that constantly tells us that foundational male leadership in the home isn't necessary and that in general, males are lazy, stupid and irresponsible (if you doubt that statement, just watch any comedy that centers around a family).
I'm not sure why, but men are often carelessly negligent in their roles as husbands and fathers and fail to see the moral and spiritual danger they have placed their families in; Threatening their marriages, the moral and spiritual molding of their children and their very own faith. We need to Wake Up! and realize we can't have it both ways. As a result, the mothers of our children become the ones who (by default and necessity) are carrying the weight of the family on their shoulders just to simply survive. We're missing it men! These women...OUR women, are stressed out and longing for the man in their lives to wake up, rescue them and grab the wheel of the family again.
God's Word commands husbands and fathers to lovingly lead their homes. As men, we are to walk in honor and integrity and to fully embrace our responsibilities as the leaders...the shepards...of our families and because of this, we are to model a loving, Christlike example for our wives and children.
Many of you reading this, may say to yourselves 'Well, he's a good Dad...' That, I believe is the root of the problem. 1 Corinthians 16:13 tells men to 'Be alert!; stand firm in the faith; act like men; be strong!' You see, I don't want to be a father who is just 'Good Enough'. I want to be courageous enough to be the man...the husband...the Daddy that God has called me...has called ALL of us to be! And yes, it takes courage...a great deal of courage to battle not only against what our culture is telling us what a man is, but against our vary own nature to set the cruise-control of life.
I want to challenge you...ask yourself the following questions:
- Is your wife weary, worn out and always feeling like she is carrying too much on her shoulders? If you don't know, then you're already disconnected...
- Does your marriage lack clear direction, romance and true intimacy?
- Are your children, whether young or grown, emotionally distant from you and spiritually apathetic towards God?
Secondly, of your friends, find one or a few, to hold each other accountable. 'Proverbs 27:17 tells us As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.' Standing alone, it is MUCH easier to lose heart, become discouraged and give up, but if you surround yourself with friends who all have a united goal and (this is key to men) allow yourself to accept their help and RELY on them, there is NOTHING you can't withstand!
Last, resolve to change. Refuse to let your past dictate your future. The failures of your past DO NOT have to be the failures of your future...Through courage, support of your brothers in arms and GOD, boldly and purposefully, retake the wheel. I guarantee you will feel better about yourself, your wife will love and respect you on a level you never knew possible and your children will as well!
Awake sleeper! and arise from the dead and Christ will shine on you. Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. - Ephesians 5:14-16