The Role of Parenting

His sons used to hold feasts in their homes on their birthdays, and they would invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. When a period of feasting had run its course, Job would make arrangements for them to be purified. Early in the morning he would sacrifice a burnt offering for each of them, thinking, ‘Perhaps my children have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.’ This was Job’s regular custom.”—Job 1:4-5 (NIV)

Job’s story and his relationship with God is one of my favorites from the Bible. Job was a very good man and had an intimate relationship with God. He was not only God-honoring, he was also an amazing father and powerful example for parents today.

Job had seven sons and three daughters. His family met regularly and ate together in love and harmony. They had a desire for relationship. Job and his wife intentionally  nurtured their family relationships.

Job had his priorities in order. As a man of faith, he had a good relationship with God.  Second, he did not permit possessions nor his career to take God’s rightful place. Thirdly, he was a committed family man. He spent valuable time with his wife and children. He lived a good life, balancing his time with the Lord, his work, and his family. 

Fathers and husbands are to serve and lead their families spiritually. James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, said, “If homes are going to survive, it will be because husbands and fathers again place their families at the highest level on their system of priorities.” He also said, “A child identifies his parents with God, whether or not the parents want that role. Most children see God the way they perceive their earthly fathers.” Job undoubtedly was looked up to as a good father. He would rise every morning to offer sacrifices and prayers for each of his children. His example for us is to daily pray for God’s protection and blessing over our children.

Sadly, Job and his wife lost all ten children and all their wealth. But God was faithful to Job, and Job continued to trust God in the midst of unimaginable pain. The story of Job is not only about the great sorrow he endured, but how he lived his life through it and God’s faithfulness and beautiful plans for him.

The story of Job has a great ending. God blessed Job with twice the number of children, his wealth was restored, and he lived and died full of days. God was faithful to complete that which concerned Job, and God will also be faithful to you as you follow Him.

DIG: Think about the role of parenting. How would you rate it in terms of value and importance?  

DISCOVER: Reflecting on the life of Job, jot down some ideas on how parenting is a ministry and a calling.

DO: Children represent one of God’s most generous gift to us. Spend some time with the children God has placed in your life. If you don’t have kids of your own, encourage a parent you know with the truth of this high calling.

About the Author

Jeff Seward