Brian Fox's ten pastoral exhortations.
Presented in Sunday School before two couples left for the mission field,
but applicable for us all - particularly us husbands.
1. Be a listener and a learner. Others have a lot to teach you.
There is a lot you do not know.
2. Remember it's a marathon, not a sprint. Adjust your pace accordingly.
3. Don't compare yourself to others. Every situation is different.
"Do nothing from selfishness (rivalry) or empty conceit." Phil 2:3-4.
4. Being a witness has as much to do with loving other believers
as it does with mouth to ear evangelism (Luke 13:35).
Relentlessly pursue unity within the body. The world is watching.
5. Men your first and most important disciple is your wife.
Be sensitive and loving and caring. Love your wife as Christ loved the church, and pursue their spiritual growth (Eph 5:25-27).
6. Men cultivate a heart for your children (Mal 4:6). Delight in your kids, because everything else in the world is pulling you away.
Make it your mission to pursue their hearts.
7. Men you are responsible for providing for the material and spiritual needs of your family. Needs change over time.
Your family's struggles are not a hinderance to the Gospel (I Tim 5:8).
8. Cultivate the discipline of Sabbath rest.
God created the Sabbath for our good.
Implies that it's not all dependent on you.
9. Beware of sacrificing sound doctrine at the altar of ministry task.
Ministers (we) will fail if we do.
10. Your number one job is to daily seek intimacy with Christ. Seek to know Him, not just about Him (John 15:5; Phil 3:8). Cultivate a longing to see Jesus, above and beyond all longings. That will give you a heart to endure.