If you are a dad and you currently have a son, you know how important it is to be the best father you can be to your child. You understand the importance of being a great example for your son. I myself am an only child, and in many ways growing up I wanted to be like my father. No doubt you fathers who are reading this right now have had the same experience with your dad. There was the story of a father and son who were walking along the beach. The boy was walking behind his father and suddenly exclaimed, “Look, Daddy, I’m walking in your footsteps!” Well, of course the little boy was excited as he tried to fill his father’s footprints in the sand. But the father began to think about the great and God-given responsibility to provide spiritual leadership for his son (Ephesians 6:1-4).
In 2 Kings 13, we read of a sad, bad time in the history of the people of God. The kings of Israel were following in evil footsteps: the footsteps of their fathers who were not in accordance with God’s law. They were not obeying the Lord at all. You had one generation with its sinful practices and these were being repeated by the next one. A vicious cycle indeed! Therefore, the Lord did not bless Israel during this time period.
The big problem in 2 Kings 13 was the issue of idol worship. Jehoahaz the son of Jehu became king in Israel and did evil in the sight of the Lord. He followed after Jeroboam, son of Nebat, and the sins he committed. Then, Israel was delivered into the hands of the Syrians. Jehoahaz pleaded with the Lord and the Lord delayed his judgment on Israel. But it didn’t last for long. There was a lack of genuine faith and repentance on Israel’s part. In 798 B.C., Jehoahaz’s son, Jehoash, later followed in his father’s footsteps.
Parents always set an example for their children, whether good or bad. There is a poem that is entitled, “A Little Fellow Follows Me” and it is by an unknown author.
A careful man I ought to be,
A little fellow follows me.
I dare not go astray,
For fear he'll go the self-same way.
I cannot once escape his eyes,
Whatever he see me do, he tries.
Like me, he says, he's going to be,
The little chap who follows me.
He thinks that I am good and fine,
Believes in every word of mine.
The base in me he must not see,
That little fellow who follows me.
I must remember as I go,
Thru summers' sun and winters' snow.
I am building for the years to be,
In the little chap who follows me.
A child will absorb the values of the parents. So mom and dad, please be careful with your daily walk of life. There is always someone watching you and wanting to follow in your footsteps!
Russ Vickers is the minister of the Middle Fayette Church of Christ, Fayetteville, Ga. The church building is located in the Glynn-Hood Plaza at 372 North Glynn St. across the road from La Hacienda Restaurant. They invite you come and visit them on Sunday for Bible study at 9:00 a.m. and worship at 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. and Wednesday evening Bible Study at 7:00 p.m. They also offer a free of charge DVD based Bible Study at their church building. Just call to make an appointment. Visit them on the web at www.mfcoc.org for the plan of salvation and other information.