The good father: fight the good fight (1)...

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Marriage is the melding of two incompatible forces, man and woman. Quarrels are inevitable. The point is to keep them lovers' quarrels.1

One reason I wrote a book on fatherhood is that Christian child rearing experts never bring up the fights between fathers and mothers over their children. Imagine Dave Ramsey getting through even a single radio program on money without dealing with marital conflict. It's inconceivable. Yet pastors preach and child rearing experts write books giving this and that advice to fathers and mothers on how to raise godly children without ever mentioning fights...

between husbands and wives over the discipline of their children.

How does that happen? Do moms and dads love their money more than they love their children? Is that why they fight over money and not over children?

Then again, maybe my wife Mary Lee and I had problems no one else has? Maybe we were sinners and everyone else is perfect? Maybe I'm the only Christian husband who's ever had his wife angry with him and leading a mutiny of the household when I disciplined one of our children?

Yet if I stop and think about all the couples my wife and I have counselled, it seems like fights over the kids are pretty common. So why do Christian pastors and childrearing experts never talk about these battles?

I think I know, but I'll let you ruminate on it for a while.

  • 1. Crude paraphrase of G. K. Chesterton.
Tim Bayly

Tim serves Clearnote Church, Bloomington, Indiana. He and Mary Lee have five children and big lots of grandchildren.

Want to get in touch? Send Tim an email!