What does it mean for a man to lead his family?

A man leading his family is a man who sets the spiritual environment in the home. What this looks like in a healthy, biblical marriage is loving your wife well, loving your children and ensuring their spiritual lives are thriving. For example, in our home, my husband Terry has established a church based culture. We love our church and so we want our children to love our church as well. Terry has established that on Sunday mornings we will be at church serving and attending. On Friday nights, our kids know that Dad will be driving them to Youth. Whenever there is a big event like Colour or Hillsong Conference, our family knows that they will be involved, helping to support our church. Since Terry has been intentional about establishing this culture and spiritual climate in our home, we all know that church and following Christ are what’s important in our family.

For example, in our home, Terry has established a church-based culture. We love our church, so we want our children to love our church as well. Terry has established that on Sunday mornings we will be at church serving and attending. On Friday nights, our kids know that Dad will be driving them to Youth. Whenever there is a big event like a church conference, our family knows that they will be involved, helping to support our church. Since Terry has been intentional about establishing this culture and spiritual climate in our home, we all know that church and following Christ are what’s important in our family.

Joshua said in Joshua 24:15 “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” By establishing this as our precedent, we know what the spiritual climate of the house is because that is what Dad has said, what Dad does and what he expects of the rest of the family.

Leading your family is ensuring the emotional health of the family is good. Recently, one of our children was having a difficult issue but was keeping it to themselves. Terry lovingly persisted and gently pushed them to open up about it. When they still wouldn’t, Terry took them for a walk because when you get children walking, you get them talking. And sure enough, over the course of a 20 minute walk we got to the root of the issue and were able to deal with it and restore emotional balance in our child’s situation.

Now what leading the family doesn’t look like is dictatorship. Terry doesn’t dictate what we read, the music we listen to, nothing like that. It is simply ensuring that what is coming into the home and the culture and spiritual climate of the home is a healthy Christ-centred church culture.

To all the men out there– It is imperative that you lead your family and set the standard of the household. If you do not, there are plenty of other people and influences who will. Every TV show, teacher, fellow student, friend and enemy out there will have an opinion on how you should lead your house, how you should discipline your children, love your wife, what you should and shouldn’t allow etc…

So you must set the tone and culture, because if you do not, someone else will.