From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Dear Dr. Graham:
My wife says I could be a better example to my children. She faults me for stopping after work for a drink with the guys after a stressful day. I am working hard to provide a living for my family so they can have more than I did when I was a boy. Is this so wrong?
Dear D.D.: Do more tangible things make for a better family life? Do things bring greater happiness than time spent with loved ones? Children are in the care of their parents for a very short time. A well-known story illustrates this point: It was customary for a lawyer who lived in a small town to stop off after work for a drink. One day, when the snow had fallen, he heard a sound behind him. Turning, he saw his young son stretching as far as he could to step into his father’s tracks.
The father asked, “Son, what are you doing?” The son replied, “I’m stepping in your footsteps.” The father sent his son home, but he couldn’t go into the bar. He realized, then, that a child will emulate a parent by what they see, not always by what they hear. Many parents preach to their children but do not always set good examples. How wonderful it is when moms and dads see the importance of cutting back on social engagements so that they can make “home and family” the center of social life. Children are impressionable. We need to place God at the center of our families. He is interested in your family, your marriage, and your children. God will honor parents who will teach their families by word and deed for He “blesses the home of the just” (Proverbs 3:33).