A blog by Josh Humbert
Some new research has come to light from a rather large sample size of over 11,000 British men and women going back many decades. The findings of the research pointed to a very strong and yet simple conclusion that would surprise many in our world today.
Are you ready for this? Are you sitting down? Ready to have your mind blown?
The results of this decades-long study covering an incredible number of people comes down to this conclusion: It is very beneficial to everyone when children have a mother and father together; ADDITIONALLY… a father who is actively participating in the lives of his children will have tremendous impact on them throughout their life.
Thank goodness for the challenge flag that occasionally gets thrown in our mixed up world.
One of the great recent rule-adjustments in the NFL has been the allowance of coaches to “challenge” certain calls made by the officiating crew.
The NFL is an incredibly fast game played by mega-athletes running, jumping, and colliding at breathtaking speeds. The officials have to make judgments in the blink of an eye. Consequently, their calls can be wrong. Now, coaches have the option to throw a red “challenge flag” when they feel a certain call was made incorrectly.
The play is then reviewed and…more often than not, the result is the correct solution. Perhaps the coach’s hunch was shown to be right. Maybe the original call stands. The point is, the power to challenge the “call on the field” is a crucial tool and brings an accuracy to the game that was missing.
Well, it’s time to grab that red flag…
Our present age is one that does not value family in general and fathers in particular. You are encouraged to love “diversity and tolerance” but make no mistake…what that means is this: your beliefs about marriage and family must align with a certain viewpoint, or you will be scorned, mocked, and labeled as “intolerant” (and the irony of it all will be totally lost on those rushing to smear that label on you). You think a family needs to be a father and mother solely committed to each other while raising up children? You actually think that will work? Get real!
Marriage is viewed simply as a contract between two people who have “fallen in love” and…sadly…it appears they can just as easily fall out of love or feel their happiness level isn’t being met and so divorce, broken families, and broken hearts remain. Or, even more recently, our culture has found the audacity to try and redefine the very definitions of marriage until it suits the whims and desires of what we think will work. As if marriage is some man-made idea that needs to be updated and “modernized.”
And fathers?…Well, just turn on any TV show or wait for a commercial involving them. Fathers are portrayed as bumbling, foolish, helpless, out of touch morons who are incapable of understanding women, websites, and just about anything else. Fathers are just an annoyance; easily replaced by other means or maybe even a second mother.
Families and fathers? Who cares about those when we have all these feelings and desires to follow? What matters is personal happiness and personal freedom. The results of our “new ideas” become more clear with every passing day: people of cheap commitments, faulty definitions, confused thinking, bad choices, and greatly unfulfilled expectations.
These have been the judgments of our society for a while now. These are the calls our culture has made.
And they are absolutely, positively, totally wrong.
What this study on parents and fathers from the University of Newcastle represents is the necessary “challenge flag” to the assumption of so many in our culture today. The best part is…it seems they didn’t even mean to throw it!
Families still matter. A mother and father together still matter. A father investing in his children still matter. There is no substitute for it. Sure, sometimes it takes researchers decades to figure out what is obvious to those from a Christian worldview, but at least we know some people will eventually catch back up to the ideas they once thought as so “regressive.”
How powerful is the impact on a person’s life when they have a mother and father together and a father who is actively involved in their development? The results from the particular research of over 11,000 people showed “those children whose fathers spent more time with them had a higher IQ and were more socially mobile…and the differences were still detectable by the age of 42.”
So, mark it down, write it in stone…if you have a family that accords with God’s design: a mother and father together and a father who is active in your upbringing — you will be smarter and have better opportunities in life. That’s what we call a WIN.
Listen to Dr. Daniel Nettle, the man who led the research efforts: “What was surprising about this research was the real sizable difference in the progress of children who benefited from paternal interest and how thirty years later, people whose dads were involved are more upwardly mobile.”
Did you catch that? “What was surprising about this research…” SURPRISING??
We’ve reached the point where now people are being “surprised” to find out that….hey, what do you know!….God actually KNEW exactly what He was doing when He designed marriage/family/fatherhood/motherhood. God’s plan, when followed, produces the best results. Imagine that, huh?
Maybe Dr.Nettle and his researchers really thought their results would show something else, but at least they had the guts to own their “surprised” reactions.
It took them an entire lifetime of study but at least they realize it’s time to “over turn” the calls that our society has been making. God’s plan was the best all along.
Funny how that is always the case.
The cool thing is that this Newcastle study isn’t some random, isolated result. There are mountains of data out now that show just how important families and fathers are (I wrote a 3-part series on fathers that you can begin reading HERE that deals with some similar studies). There is no credible argument to the contrary. No valid alternative or substitute. Our modern solutions fail miserably when put in the crucible. God’s design stands the test of time. He shows how to get touchdowns, the world just keeps losing yardage and turning it over.
The future will hold more of the same. More researchers will unwittingly and unintentionally prove His wisdom over and over again. It will, lol, surprise them, but it won’t surprise those who love Jesus and obey His Word.
There is a God and He is a Good, Perfect, and Loving Father to those that belong to Him through Christ Jesus. He knows family because He has adopted so many though the precious and finished work of His Son. He has made known what is best for us in His Word that never fails.
If you’re a husband, love your wife and honor your vows to her until you die. Forsake the low views and thoughts on marriage that our culture holds. Throw the challenge flag on that because you know the right call.
If you’re a father, LOVE YOUR WIFE and love your kids. Invest in them. Raise them up to know the truth. Hug them and pray for them. Forsake the ideals of foolish and worthless fathers that our culture holds. You are literally raising your children’s IQ scores and giving them better opportunities in life. You KNOW that call is getting reversed.
Love your wife, love your kids, and point them to the ultimate Father. Who knows…maybe you’ll be surprised at what He can do with a life that’s lived like that.
As always, thanks for reading. Your comments and insights are always welcomed. If you enjoyed this, please share it. Want more? Check the archives or the podcast.