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On Fathers and Fatherhood

Updated on June 19, 2009

Tomorrow is Father’s Day. And as I was contemplating writing something that pays tribute to fathers throughout the world, this hub was gradually but spontaneously formed.  

This hub is dedicated to all the fathers out there, especially to my own father, my brothers who are fathers, as well as to my husband. May we always honor, respect, and love our fathers; and be there for them every moment of their lives.

My father, mother, Zara, and her cousin A Boy
My father, mother, Zara, and her cousin A Boy

Fathers are the pillars of our homes. Together with our mothers, they make the difference between a house and a home. Without fathers, homes are more prone to disintegration; families are more likely to fall apart; and lives are more likely to break.

This underscores therefore the role played by fathers in keeping families intact. And since families make up a better society, good fathers are indeed vital in the maintenance of a sound and ideal social structure.

But the modern age has come to see a lot of undesirable traits in these so-called pillars of society. Various communication media carry news of fathers raping their own daughters, killing their wives, or abandoning their families prompting us to ask, “What drives these fathers to commit such acts which are contradictory to their nature and functions?”

Fathers are supposed to be kind, loving, caring, protective, and good providers. They are given great responsibilities by God to act as our fathers here on earth. These responsibilities are neither light nor easy, and therefore should be thoroughly put to heart.

But why do some fathers tend to forget or disregard these responsibilities? Such question simply echoes why there are mothers who do not act like real mothers ought to do. And you could come up with a long list of factors leading to one of life’s harsh realities – irresponsible parenting.

For me, the reality of having irresponsible fathers or mothers in our society is, like all social illnesses, an offshoot of the influence of sin. In the bigger picture, irresponsible fatherhood seems to be a common phenomenon across all cultures. But how can we stop the spread of this social disease?

I think all of us, regardless of our role in the family and status in the society, can do something to help stop the spread of irresponsible fatherhood. But the main responsibility would naturally lie in the hands of fathers. As the pillars of the home, fathers have the power to either build it or break it. They hold the key that opens to a field of opportunities awaiting each family member. Moreover, fathers are the principal source of human strength and protection for the entire family, and comprise the main building block of a community.

On this token, I have considered a few important steps that might help in molding and preserving the structure of families and communities by banking on the role played by fathers. These steps can be accomplished from within the family, the community where the family belongs, at the national level and extending to the human society as a whole. These include the following:

1) Recognize and appreciate the roles of fathers by giving them due respect and importance. Once they feel appreciated, fathers are more likely to be inspired and driven in accomplishing their fatherhood responsibilities.

2) Identify specific strengths and limitations of individual fathers. Within the family, each member must be aware of the father’s skills and abilities, as well as his weaknesses. We must not put additional burdens upon our fathers’ shoulders by expecting them to do what is beyond their means and capabilities.

3) Encourage and support fathers as they carry out their various tasks and responsibilities. Although fathers are the main pillars of our homes, they also become weak and weary. Thus, we need to be able to provide the needed support to prop them up in times of discouragement and weakness.

4) Inspire fathers to go on performing their roles even in the face of adversities, hardships, and troubles. Even superheroes become tired and desperate, and our fathers are not even superheroes. So they need to have a constant source of inspiration whatever the situation may be to be able to uphold their noble calling which is fatherhood.

5) Pray for our fathers that they may reflect the father image of our Heavenly Father. Although far from perfect, a godly father seeks God’s wisdom in the performance of his fatherly tasks. Thus, he has the privilege of being guided and blessed by our Divine Father, enabling him to mirror the kind of fatherhood which is authored by God.

Always bear in mind that fathers have a great accountability to God for the safety and general welfare of their children. It would therefore make a big difference if they strongly uphold and honor this accountability in their hearts. Any help from us in making our fathers do just that, would certainly be vital in the preservation of the real essence of fatherhood.

This Father’s Day and onwards, try to make it an effort to show your love and appreciation to the man who has carried and held you in his strong arms – your father.


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