During Friday nights of SWO13, Brody Holloway teaches from Acts 1:1-11."Be my witnesses" is the promise to the believer. We have the truth of the Gospel. Nothing would be more wicked than to keep the truth to ourselves and not proclaim the Gospel.
Brody Holloway preaches from chapter 9 in a study of 1 Corinthians at Red Oak Church in Andrews, NC, teaching that our highest authority in all things must be the Word of God.
“…take … the sword of the spirit, which is the Word of God.” (Ephesians 6:17)
Well, it is Thanksgiving, and I feel the pressure, and a bit of an obligation, to write an appropriate, occasion-specific blog. I don’t think that is a bad thing; in fact, I think it is a really great thought. I mean, I am genuinely thankful that the Pilgrims came over to pave the way for religious freedom, and that Squanto taught them how to grow corn, and that they had a big feast to celebrate it. I am not being funny. I really love this particular holiday, and what it commemorates. I love the annual Holloway/Turkey Bowl (a brutally competitive gridiron war of the grittiest caliber. Lailee is cut from the same cloth as say… Clay Mathews?). If you think the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving is a traditional throw-down, you should see this. And the accompanying Holloway Basketball Classic (traditionally played after dark under the lights) is a men vs. women affair that often brings bloodshed. This is one competitive family! I love eating fresh venison tenderloin, biscuits and gravy for breakfast (Tuck supplied this year’s kill with a nice fat doe). And I can’t forget Little’s buttermilk pies. You have, no doubt, heard of them.
We spend the holiday in middle-Georgia (not to be confused with Middle-Earth), hanging out at the Williams farm. Little has cousins there who may be the most hospitable people I have ever met. It is not only a day, but a week that I look forward to every year.
This morning, though, my mind goes to Ephesians 6:17, and an attitude of thankfulness that God has not left me unarmed in the battle He has called me into. I can’t imagine trying to be a dad, lead a home, shepherd this family of redeemed sinners, pay the bills, pastor my wife, maintain sexual purity, pursue righteousness, guard my steps and ways, be faithful, and wage war on sin, without the gift of the weapon that is the Word of God.
I am so grateful that God not only arms me, but that He wields the sword of the Spirit within me. He dwells in me. He is for me. He destroyed death for me. He has crushed the enemy. He was tempted in every way yet never sinned. He provides for me what He demands and expects from me. I am thankful for that.
Life is war. Sin is relentless. Satan hates us. We are overwhelmingly armed. It really isn’t a fair fight. You just gotta pick up your weapons. But you don’t have to fight unarmed. I am TRULY thankful for that.
“As a father, the son in whom he delights.” Proverbs 3:12b
I love being a father, but I also really love being a daddy. There is such a joy that comes from investing in my son and daughters. I think one of the most encouraging things I can do for my son is to enjoy him. I talk to young men all the time who know their father loves them, but he doesn’t necessarily enjoy them. There is a whole new element to a father’s love when it is accompanied with pleasure in the father-son relationship. This gives a son a completely different, elevated level of confidence.
Building confidence in my son is important to his development and understanding of who he is in Christ. God loves his sons, but he also takes pleasure in us. This completely legitimizes and affirms me.
One of the ways we do this is by teaching the ways of manhood. I often place the burden of being “man of the house” on my son, Tucker (Tuck), when I am traveling. I spend a good deal of time on the road, so I want him to be learning to carry the weight of responsibility that a man should carry. I will often look him in the eyes, put my hand on his shoulder and tell him, “You’ve got this. You’re in charge of personal security at the “Tajmaholloway” while I am gone. Shoot straight and be the man.” I will always grin at him and let him see that leaving him in charge gives me confidence, and delight. I affirm his masculinity — both the tender side and the rough side — to his sisters and mother. This is good for everybody.
Men, invest in your boys. Teach them all that matters. But enjoy them. Delight in them. That will affirm them like nothing else will.
For me and Tuck, we just spend tons of time together. Quantity of time screams delight. Give ‘em lots of it. And grin and laugh while you do it.