Thursday, June 17, 2010

Father's Day, in light of Proverbs 12:4

Aigh! Suddenly, I've run out of week!

I had in mind to do something on Father's Day, as I have on Mother's Day in the past. But now here it is, Thursday. I already have a post; tomorrow's Hither and Thither... and you just don't "bump" Hither and Thither.

I have many thoughts about manhood and fatherhood in our culture, but unfortunately most of them are half-formed and not ready for prime-time.

...then I wrote three sentences, and deleted them all. Which sort of proves, or at least illustrates, my point.

So I'll start and pretty much end with Proverbs 12:4, and an application:
An excellent wife is the crown of her husband,
but she who brings shame is like rottenness in his bones.:
One could almost write a book on that single verse, but I'll restrain myself. Note that it is the mark of an excellent wife, which in Hebrew suggests a wife of character and substance, is marked by making her husband feel like a king. She adorns him. She puts him in a high place.

Wisdom would suggest the further thought that such a man has the position and motivation to do great exploits for his wife and his family.

Is that a reach? Hardly. Simply move on to Line B and ask, What is the point of contrast? Here we see a woman who shames her husband, who disgraces him and causes him to blush. What is the effect? A rotten skeleton. Bone cancer.

Think, as Solomon means us to do: what can a man accomplish, if his bones are all rotten? Nothing — which suggests a vicious cycle. She demoralizes him, he slumps, this infuriates her, she demoralizes him, he slumps, this infuriates her....

Clearly then the two portraits are meant to clash off of each other. The first creates a cycle also. Because she's a woman of character, she treats her husband in a God-centered way. She has embraced her created role as helper and soul-mate with all her heart (Genesis 2:18). She's happy to be a woman of God, and does her best to make her husband happy to be a man of God. What he does feeds her happiness.

She is in this way a contrast to the foolish woman of Line B, who tears down her house with her own hands (Proverbs 14:1).

There's more to say, but I'll stop. (But here is a little more.) Having blasted the Proverbs 31:28-31 horn lustily in the past — and even done it, right here, in front of everyone! — I thought perhaps you might bear with this word of exhortation.

So, ladies, how are you going to make your guys feel like kings this Father's Day? (Or if that's a secret, how have you done it in the past?)

There. Now I think at one time or another I've given good "bumps" to Father's Day and Mother's Day.

"Outdo one another in showing honor" (Romans 12:10b)


Rachael Starke said...

Saturday, he and his best friend (who have both been working insane hours when they're not loving their wives and children) will be sent up to Napa, where I went earlier this week and arranged special tastings at his two favorite "man wine" wineries. No doubt they'll visit a few more. Then they have dinner reservations at one of Michael Chiarello's restaurants.

Sunday, I will have declined the request to help with the worship team (which usually means me leaving at o'dark thirty and him getting all the girls ready for church). Instead, we'll take advantage of the fact that there's no Adult Sunday School, and let Daddy enjoy a leisurely sleep in, while the girls and I make him breakfast in bed. After church, there will be mandatory nap time for all children, and he will have the new book on the Guinness family to read before he falls asleep on the couch, while I make him his favorite grass-fed moo cow for dinner, probably accompanied by whatever he purchased in Napa. Then I'll do all evening kid duties, and leave him with some obscure black and white movie, which I will watch with him cheerfully with no (verbalized) complaining. :)

Should be a good day. :)

Barbara said...

Ack! Well I won't be giving my dad a VeggieTales tie. Scary things, those.

The only other "man" in my life (besides my son, who isn't a husband much less a father yet)already is a King, a wonderful Heavenly Husband, so...

bp said...

Thanks for the early reminder, Dan. Makes me want to break out my Excellent Wife book by Martha Peace again :) And reading your other post about your wife was such a beautiful tribute to her, I really enjoyed that. Thanks.

I'm thinking about actually asking my hubs if we can all watch one of his 50 classic movies (that he got from our daughter) together. He'll be shocked! lol (I wonder what he'll pick..Godzilla, swamp thing, frankenstein, there's so many good ones to choose from) :-/

btw, I noticed that you said that a wife "adorns" her husband..did you mean "adores"?

DJP said...

Nope, I meant "adorns." Thanks, though, I do sometimes do that typo-thing.

Merrilee Stevenson said...

(Enoch Stevenson: SPOILER ALERT! Don’t read this until Sunday morning!)

: )

I appreciate this post, Dan. This week was the last week of school for my kids. As I went around handing out jars of homemade jelly and apple butter with notes of appreciation to teachers and support staff, I came to realize more palpably how I represent my husband to these people who rarely get to see him, but see me quite a bit, and the fruit of our labors, our children, a lot. It is because of his commitment to honor the Lord that he works such long hours to provide for our family, which makes it possible for me to stay at home full-time, and do what I like to call “my dream job,” a stay-at-home wife and mother.

My husband is a school teacher who loves to bake and make homemade things for other people to enjoy, and sometimes doesn’t get to enjoy them himself. He teaches Latin at a public high school, and this week he baked 8 loaves of bread and 200 scones for his students, and taught them how to make homemade ginger ale. At our kids’ school bake sale, his cinnamon raisin bread was a huge hit, and I had the privilege of crediting my husband for it when people tried to compliment me. We both enjoy the thrill of giving out homemade gifts and then telling one another what people’s responses were.

So while I know he reads your blog, and will most likely read this before he’s supposed to, here’s the surprise: I ordered a case of jalapenos from our local produce store, and we’ll be canning them this weekend so he can once again enjoy putting them on his pizza. That's just the kind of people we are. (And he's getting the toolbox he asked for. But don't tell him.)

My beloveds domesticated nerd said...

After listening to John MacArthur on the radio during his lunch break my husband called me up choking back tears. Apparently John MacArthur was speaking about the Proverbs 31 woman a few weeks back.
I don't say this to toot my own horn, but my husband said he got so emotional after hearing the sermon because he feels I pattern the Proverbs 31 woman. He was grateful beyond words for who the Lord has/is shaping me to am I. In my own strength I could never be that woman...believe me!I am a work in progress!
I say all that only because it is my husband's obedience to the Lord that he works 40+ hrs. a week, 52 weeks a year to provide for our needs. That gives me the ability to stay at home & be the homeschooling mom of 4 kids who cooks most food from scratch, makes quite a bit of things for the home with my own hands, and have abundant love for my beloved husband of 20 yrs and our 4 children. My husband, children and home are my mission field & I am not ashamed to say that.
My beloved takes his God given responsiblity for his family very seriously and I appreciate his willingness to do so. That gives me the freedom to be who God desires me to be.
I asked my beloved what he would want for Father's Day and he said, nothing! He leaned over, embraced me and said he has all he would ever need! Of course, I won't let him get off that easy! =)
So tonight we are going to a show in Branson, MO. The kids have bought him some fishing tackle, so they will be going fishing early Sat. Sunday, I plan to spoil him rotten. He got a new Wii game for his birthday last week, so I imagine he will have some serious game time with our four kids =)

J♥Yce said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sir Aaron said...


Which ones are the "man wine" wineries?