We are not only experiencing the biggest dearth of Fathers in our history but also the biggest lack of real men. This may sound a bit harsh, but the evidence – like our children – screams to be heard.
About 40% of children live without a Father in the home. They represent:
· 63% of youth suicides (5x’s national average)
· 90% of homeless/runaways (32 x’s national average)
· 85% of behavior disorders (20 x’s national average)
· 80% of rapists with anger issues (14 x’s national average)
· 75% of adolescents in chemical abuse (10 x’s national average)
· 85% of youths in prison (20 x’s national average)
· 71% of pregnant teens
· 90% of repeat arsonists
Sadly a girl raised in a Fatherless home is 92% more likely to get divorced than those raised with a Dad. Unwed motherhood has increased from 5% to over 40% since 1960. The cycle feeds itself. Where will it end?
Psychiatrist, Dr. Alfred Masser of Northside Hospital in Atlanta, GA has written that the absence of a Father is related to “most social nightmares – from boys with guns to girls with babies.”
On the other hand, children with Fathers involved in their education are:
· 40% less likely to repeat a grade
· 70% less likely to drop-out
· More likely to get A’s
· More likely to enjoy school and engage in extra-curricular activities
The truth is, children with involved, loving Fathers are significantly more likely to do well in school, have healthy self-esteem, exhibit empathy and pro-social behavior, and avoid high-risk behaviors such as drug use, truancy, and criminal activity compared to children who do not have an involved Father.
While the vital importance of Mothers has long been recognized, the role of Fathers, too often, has not. Just today I received an email from our church administrator who had been diligently seeking a good video for Father’s Day. While she found a plethora of, “look how stupid Dad is” videos, she couldn’t find one that elevated Dad’s to the level honor and respect portrayed in Scripture.
In far too many ways even the Church has followed Hollywood’s example of the buffoon Father with the Mother holding the important stuff together. This is exactly what the enemy of our souls wants. If he can continue to degrade, belittle and make Dads believe that they are unimportant, he can destroy untold millions of impressionable children. If the cycle is not interrupted by the grace and power of our almighty Father in Heaven, countless generations will be lost.
Dads, make no mistake, you are critically important! One little word or deed at the oddest of times in your child’s life may make all the difference in the world not only for them but also for their children and their children and…
God bless our Dads and help them be the men You have created them to be.
· National Vital Statistics Report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
· Masser, A. “Father Hunger.” Medical Aspects of Human Sexuality, 9, pp. 231–243, 1989