About Engage

Engage exists to provide perspective on culture through the eyes of a Biblical worldview, showing how that worldview intersects with culture and engages it.

We are a team of 20-somethings brought together by a common faith in Jesus Christ and employment in our parent organization American Family Association.

The Fatherhood Crisis

Mason Beasler
Writer for Engage

During the Revolutionary War, an “illegal” method of warfare was growing among the American colonists fighting against the British. 

When firing on the enemy, some American soldiers started aiming for the British officers instead of the infantry. 

A tactic this simple may seem obvious to us in the 21st century, but back then the proper way to fight was to shoot at the ordinary, lowly infantry on the ground, not the officers on horseback. 

Among the British troops, the sudden and unexpected loss of a colonel or major no doubt elicited the desired confusion within the ranks. 

Who’s in charge now? What do we do? Who do we follow? 

It's a basic strategy, but exceptionally lethal. 

Topple the leader of a group and the followers are likely to fold with him. 

In modern America, some may be surprised to learn that Satan has employed the same strategy in his war on the family. 

He has identified the father as the biblical head of the household and has taken aim accordingly. 

However, the enemy’s attacks look less like musket balls flying through the air and more like messages appearing on a TV screen. Have you noticed a common theme running through sitcoms, comedies, or family-oriented television these days? 

The father is oftentimes portrayed as an absolute buffoon, consistently out of touch with just about everything except a beer bottle or a football game. These men are depicted as idiots who don't know how to relate to their kids and really only desire sex and sleep. 

The campaign doesn’t stop there. The Devil has struck at the very heart of fatherhood, at the very heart of men: masculinity. 

The culture, through social media and Hollywood, tells us that masculinity is toxic, and to be accepted in culture, men should behave more like women. 

So if men carry themselves with boldness, tenacity, strength, and courage, they’re bucking the societal and cultural trends placed upon them.

But if they relent – if fathers jump off the horse in the middle of battle – and adopt the bashful and tame model of fatherhood and masculinity that the world demands, then the family is left asking the same questions asked by the British soldiers. 

Who’s in charge now? What do we do? Who do we follow? 

Satan’s goal, the real agenda behind this twisted messaging, is the surgical removal of the father from the family unit. 

The National Fatherhood Initiative citing the U.S. Census Bureau is reporting that 18.3 million children, approximately 25%, live without a biological, step, or adoptive father in the home. 

And the chaos following this pointed attack on fathers has been catastrophic. 

Several studies agree on the following statistics:

- 63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes.

- 90% of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes (32 times the average).

- 71% of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes (9 times the average).

- 85% of all youths in prison come from fatherless homes (20 times the average). 

- 71% of pregnant teenagers lack a father.

- 85% of children who exhibit behavioral disorders come from fatherless homes.

- 75% of adolescent patients in chemical abuse centers come from fatherless homes. 

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, “Without fathers as social and economic role models, many boys try to establish their manhood through sexually predatory behavior, aggressiveness, or violence.” 

Fathers, despite what you constantly hear from the world, you are needed! 

The Bible speaks repeatedly about the importance, responsibility, and blessing of a godly father figure. 

For you know that we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children, encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God (1 Thessalonians 2:11-12). 

Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). 

The righteous lead blameless lives; blessed are their children after them (Proverbs 20:7). 

In the face of a culture that beckons you to weakness, timidity, and complacency, the Word of God encourages you to be strong and courageous, like Joshua in the Old Testament, who declared, “As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15). 

If God has made you a father, He has given you both a responsibility and a heritage in your children. 

Youth in today’s dark world needs a Christ-centered leader more than ever, and as the drug clinics, correctional facilities, and homeless shelters clearly reflect, your position is one of infinite importance. 

Many children are still asking that question today. 

Who do we follow?  

And it’s up to you, fathers, to answer that question.

Originally posted on The Stand.

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