I have heard from so many clients who say something like, ‘I wish my husband would become the spiritual leader in our home.’ Not only is it a sad commentary on we Christian men, it’s an inaccurate commentary. It’s inaccurate because, whether for better or worse, we as Christian husbands are the spiritual leaders. It is not something we choose to do or not to do. We might be good leaders or bad leaders, but spiritual leadership is our God-given role and there is no escaping it.
In our home at this present time, there is myself and Wendy and five kids under six years old. It can be little chaotic. Let’s say I wake up in the morning and before getting out of bed I silently pray to God, thanking Him for the day etc. And then I ask Him to bring peace into our home that day. I ask Him to give us His love for one another. I ask Him to help us be kind and merciful and compassionate toward one another. And let’s say that while I’m praying, Wendy gets up and starts to get the kids ready for the day.
Remember, I’ve asked for God’s help in having a good family. Because God loves peace and kindness and mercy, this is a prayer that I know would be in God’s will for our lives. But what if, while Wendy is working with all these little ones, I stay in bed. Instead of getting up and pulling my share of the load I do nothing to help get the kids fed and clean up after. Instead, I roll over and tune out all the noise. Guess what? If God answers my prayer with a yes, it will only be out of sheer grace for Wendy and mercy for
me. And I know from experience (he says with guilt) that if I'm not there, there is more often war than peace.
The fact is, the man very often sets the tone for the day for the whole family. To want to be a Christian husband and father is a huge responsibility. To the extent that the man fails to fulfill his role in the Christian home, to that extent will his prayers fall on silence at the other end. This is not to say that the wife has no effect on how a family turns out. God has worked through millions and millions of women in the absence of responsible men. Generally though, as the husband goes in his spiritual walk to a large extent so goes the family.