FATHER’S DAY: THE FATHER AS A LEADER -Elder Samuel Edet, Ph.D
First South African President, Nelson Mandela said; “there are times when a leader must move out ahead of the flock, go off in a new direction, confident that he is leading his people in the right way”. One time British Prime Minister, James Callaghan in his own words put it this way; “a leader must have the courage to act against an expert’s advice. In any crisis, the leader has the most freedom at the onset when he had the least information”. The father, at all times, is a leader. The Bible says; “hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding”. (Proverbs 4 v 1). This is to say that the divine injunction to the father is to give leadership. However, to be able to give leadership, the father must sanctify himself for that role.
The father must live by godly principles. He should love, admonish, where necessary, teach his people good virtues and like Jesus Christ forgive. “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23 v 34). That was Jesus Christ demonstrating leadership. All fathers should follow in this path.
A father cannot give leadership if he fails in his responsibility of providing for his people. Therefore the father has to work hard to put food on the table, clothe and train his children and wife. Failing in this responsibility, the entire household will be in disarray. While it is biblical that “children, obey your parents in the Lord for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with a promise; that it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth” (Ephesians 6 vs 1-3), a hungry and dying child may not be able to fulfill this obligation.
Government is like a father. Government should perform all responsibilities expected of the father. The families together make up a state and the states together make up the country. It follows therefore that a good and responsible father makes a good family and this translates to a good society, state and a great country.
As we celebrate Father’s Day today, let us rededicate ourselves to give leadership in our various families to the extent that our state and country will be peaceful, good to live in and easy to govern.
Happy Father’s Day and may God bless all of us.