Prayer for the Grace of Fatherly Wisdom and Responsibility February 27, 2017Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Domestic Church, family, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, mortification, Restoration, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
From a nice little prayer book my wife gave me – no hint there, I’m sure! – called, simply, Father’s Manual. There is much good advice in this book, which is presented in the form of prayers one may offer up to be a good, wise, just, and holy father.
So many men today who are having children of their own had either only a weak or no good fatherly guide on which to model their own behavior as father and head of the domestic church. Even those who had good fathers in their lives swim in a cultural sewer that inculcates perverse ideas regarding fathers and fatherhood on a constant basis. These prayers, then, can be very helpful for men who are struggling in the roles to which they will be held to a strict accounting at their particular judgment. Even for those who are very solid in their roles as father, I hope some of these will be helpful reminders. The excerpt below is on praying for the Grace of fatherly wisdom and responsibility, pp. 22-26:
Heavenly Father, in establishing the family, you have decreed that the child should have a need for both father and mother – and have made each of them, as parents, responsible to you for the souls of their children, which have been created to your very image and likeness.
So, as a father, I must realize that I shall give a severe account to you for any laziness or indifference in the fulfilment of my office.
Bring me to be a good father to my children.
Let me never be a slacker in the sacred trust which I have accepted from your hands.
It is not permitted me, I know, to push off on my wife the obligation of parental control; I have my own part of this burden and a responsibility. So may I always accept my share of the parents’ duty and carry it out prayerfully and dependably.
Your plan for the family and its needs makes it plain that the fact that I work all day to provide our material living does not permit me to remain aloof from the problems of rearing the children and directing them. Let me always realize deeply that my calling to be a parent is a full-time job, which admits of no vacation.
May I prayerfully strive to work harmoniously with my wife in all things pertaining to discipline in the home – discussing matters privately with her and working them out cooperatively. And my I never bicker with her or argue before my children, especially in matters of family policy or discipline.
May the consideration I show my wife deepen my children’s love for her as their mother.
Let the correction I give my children be quiet and fatherly, yet firm – and may it always be the fruit of prayer.
Let me realize deeply my obligation of being a companion to my children, sharing their interests and enthusiasms, guiding them, counseling them, encouraging them.
And in the corrections that I must administer, may my children be able to to look to me and see in my life an example of everything that, as a father, I require of them.
Let them see in me a fitting example of truthfulness at all times, of honesty in dealing with them and with my fellow man, of reverence for God in all I say and do, of dignity, always, in my speech, which should never be such that I may not approve the same words in them. But rather in all things may I teach first by actions what I must require of my children by fatherly command.
Teach me, heavenly Father, to model my thinking and willing and acting after your own all-wise fatherhood and thus may I return responsibly and reverently to you the souls of the children you have entrusted to me.
I should add, while the above was certainly tailored specifically for fathers, mothers could certainly derive great fruit from such prayers/meditations, with suitable changes. The unique role of the father, however, has been often even more under threat in our culture than has that of the mother, or at least some strange derivative of what was traditionally associated with motherhood. Then again, men aren’t as frequently sold a horrific pack of lies asserting that killing one’s own offspring is the way to personal empowerment. So perhaps the threats are a bit differently orientated, but of the same magnitude for both mothers and fathers.
I pray you find this useful and/or edifying!