Building a God-Saturated, Christ-centered Home through Biblical Headship

Jeff Pollard on Biblical Headship

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Hey! American men!  Step it up ’cause you’re not leading your home biblically well enough!

-by Kathi

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The National Center for Family-Integrated Churches (NCFIC) posted a video of Jeff Pollard, explaining biblical headship. Jeff Pollard is elder (that means pastor in family-integrated churchspeak) at Mt. Zion Bible Church, Pensacola, Florida. He is the author Christian Modesty and the Public Undressing of America (which is currently available at Amazon for $.01).

The video is short, which makes me wonder if it’s a snippet of a talk that Mr. Pollard has recorded. Even though it’s short, there’s much to digest.

Mr. Pollard starts with:

When God appoints a man to be the head it’s to be the husband of his wife and to love her as Christ loved the church. That’s an astonishing requirement. Who’s sufficient for these things? And to try to get the modern American male to understand what it means to live as a self-sacrificing head of a wife is still a great challenge.

Mr. Pollard thinks exactly what I think, “That’s an astonishing requirement.” I truly feel for men who live with this appointment and requirement. I can only think that it is incredibly stressful to have that much to carry on your shoulders.

What exactly does “biblical headship” mean to Mr. Pollard? It seems that dads (really no mention of being a husband in here) are supposed to provide children with a “God-saturated world” and a “Christ-centered life.” How do dads do this? Through scripture reading and prayer. Oh, and sprinkle homeschooling on top to call it good (almost good).

Even with the Bible reading, prayer, and homeschooling, it still seems that men are not living up to the standard of biblical headship because Mr. Pollard ends with:

So dads, they [children] are important. And I see signs that some of them are growing, but I don’t see enough, even in some of the age-integrated circles. So that’s a very real concern for me.

Thank you for your concern, Mr. Pollard, and for dealing with it by offering a vague explanation of “biblical headship.” American men, I’m sorry, but you are a bunch of poor saps because this elder doesn’t think you’ve got what it takes to do the job of providing biblical headship over your family. Try as hard as you like, you’ll never measure up to the standard made up in this guy’s head.

Photo credit: Ephesians 5:22-26 | Husbands, Love your wives! via photopin (license)

92 comments on “Building a God-Saturated, Christ-centered Home through Biblical Headship

  1. All the obsessing and doting over married fathers seems to imply that in the gender complementarian view, men are big fat Nothings and Losers if they have never married, are childless, are divorced or widowed.

    Quoting Pollard:

    When God appoints a man to be the head it’s to be the husband of his wife and to love her as Christ loved the church. That’s an astonishing requirement. Who’s sufficient for these things? And to try to get the modern American male to understand what it means to live as a self-sacrificing head of a wife is still a great challenge.

    That looks so pretty on my computer monitor, but the reality is that gender comps tend to really define “headship” and “servant leadership” (which I don’t even think is a phrase that is in the Bible?) as meaning, “The husband is the boss over the wife, he gets all the final decision-making say-so.”

    The problem is that the Bible does not define headship to be an authoritative position, but gender comps try to spin it that way, or some of them live it out that way in their marriages.

    The rest live out functionally egalitarian marriages while hypocritically proclaiming to be complementarian and to despise feminism.

    I was just saying the other day in an older thread (_Here_) that this male headship stuff (a tenet of gender complementarianism) is harmful to men, too, not just women.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “American men, I’m sorry, but you are a bunch of poor saps because this elder doesn’t think you’ve got what it takes to do the job of providing biblical headship over your family.”

    Oh, my hubby already knows what a miserable failure he is in this area. Pollard only verifies what our ministers beat him over the head with for years. It doesn’t matter that he busts it to keep a roof over our heads and to claw his way out of near bankruptcy. It doesn’t matter that he was disfellowshipped for taking the advice of professional bankers and businessmen over that of the ministers of our former cult. If he isn’t “washing me with the word” and making certain we comply with all of the cult’s requirements . . . well, he’s just a lousy worm. But they love him anyway, of course. With the love of God, of course. That “tough love.”

    Sorry, Pollard. I’d much rather have a husband who loves me and our kids in very real, practical, mundane, every day type ways. He doesn’t need to put on an image for me. I’ve seen him face trials that the most “Gospelly” ministers in our former cult couldn’t deal with.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Btw, does anyone know if this Pollard guy actually has a real job? Most of the ministers I’ve known who think this way are on some church’s dole.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The transcript on the linked page has him saying, “I see signs that some of them are growing, but I don’t see enough”. Sorry we don’t live up to your standards, Mr. Pollard.

    Then again, I don’t care about your standards. I care about God working in and through me as a parent, husband, friend, colleague, neighbor and all the other things I am as a child of God.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Re:

    Jeff Pollard is elder (that means pastor in family-integrated churchspeak) at Mt. Zion Bible Church, Pensacola, Florida. He is the author Christian Modesty and the Public Undressing of America (which is currently available at Amazon for $.01).

    $.01 is asking far too much.

    The book description:

    In the Church today, there are few cows quite as sacred as the right of modern Christians to dress however they please. But in this groundbreaking work, Jeff Pollard challenges us to embrace God’s standard and to understand the historical roots of the rise of nudity and immodesty in modern culture. His perspective is thoughtful and balanced. Most importantly, he accomplishes what few authors on this subject have achieved: a treatise that avoids both license and legalism. A courageous booklet.

    I have to disagree a little.

    The only people I see making a huge issue out of clothing are the ones who only harp on how girls and women dress, and they claim (depending on which denomination we are discussing) everything from opened toe shoes to tops with spaghetti straps to pants on a female “immodest.”

    (Yes, notice one seldom sees these people telling MEN and BOYS to “cover up” and to “dress modestly.” I bet anything this guy’s $.01 booklet only, or primarily, addresses how GIRLS or WOMEN dress. I can’t check on that, because I don’t see a preview of the booklet’s contents online.)

    I don’t really even see the progressive Christians (who are usually pretty lax about sexual mores) screaming and yelling and advocating that all women should show up to church wearing four inch stiletto heels, mini-skirts, and fishnet stockings.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. @Daisy

    “Yes, notice one seldom sees these people telling MEN and BOYS to “cover up” and to “dress modestly.” I bet anything this guy’s $.01 booklet only, or primarily, addresses how GIRLS or WOMEN dress.”

    That’s because when men “stumble” one of the first assumptions is that the woman must have dressed provocatively. His behavior is HER fault. So, like in Islam, the woman must be covered so the man will not be tempted. Except it doesn’t work. If you swath a woman in yards of fabric, a man can, eventually, be turned on by her ankle peeking out.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Thanks for pointing out the book’s blurb, Daisy. When it says “In the Church today, there are few cows quite as sacred as the right of modern Christians to dress however they please”, I get the impression the writer doesn’t get out much. Dressing “however they please” is not even in the top ten of sacred cows in the modern church worldwide.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. @ Tim.
    The only thing I can think of is that he wrote that during 1964 (the rise of the mini skirt), or some time in the 1990s, when more and more churches did not frown on folks wearing casual attire (jeans, sneakers) to church services.

    In some denominations (IFB), what people wear is a big deal. I have seen IFBs debating back and forth (on fundy forums) over the precise length of a woman’s shorts (culottes) and other insipid things.

    Some guy (I think a Pentecostal?) did a blog post a couple years ago lamenting at how he can see more and more women’s knees when he goes to church. Knees are slutty and improper, you see.

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  9. BTDT, oh yes. I know. Some religious groups hold women responsible for men’s lapses or sexual faults.

    It doesn’t matter what you wear. I’ve had men check me out, hit on me, at times I felt I looked awful – next to no make-up, ratty old torn up jeans – there was nothing trampy or sexy about the way I looked, but I got flirted with and hit on anyhow.

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  10. @ Daisy

    I don’t know how to put a picture on here, I am not computer savvy.

    But if you know how there is a picture of two Arab men riding a bicycle looking at a woman wearing a burka. People use this picture to mock Muslim men’s misogyny.

    This is it.

    image
    http://funnyasduck.net/?s=dem+toes

    Liked by 1 person

  11. @Daisy

    “Some guy (I think a Pentecostal?) did a blog post a couple years ago lamenting at how he can see more and more women’s knees when he goes to church. Knees are slutty and improper, you see.”

    In some holiness churches the men are not even allowed to wear shorts. My husband wore shorts out in his office one evening (not speedos, you know, 🙂 just baggy shorts that came above his knees). Someone came by to drop something off and reported him. Next thing he knows he’s getting a call from our minister.

    We even went swimming in our dresses. Since Pollard is NCFIC, I’m going to guess that the type of swimwear he’d find appropriate would be something like this:

    http://www.simply-modest.com/posecom/index.php

    Or maybe even this: LOL

    http://www.eastessence.com/islamic-clothing/modest-swimwear/

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  12. I don’t know if this is the right place to put this, but I am encouraged and amazed at the strength and compassion that all of you (minus the troll) show in your responses! Some of the fundie behavior can also be found in certain cultures and it can tear a child apart. In my family “adults” could say any shaming or bullying thing to a child and not be called out. As a child and teen, certain relatives would make cruel comments to me in from of other adults about my appearance and no one would stand up for me. Later they might say, “Well you know that is just how he/she is.” They never acknowledged the pain that was transmitted. Of course as a young person, I would have been reprimanded if I “talked back”. Even adults would excuse bad behavior and saw it as a positive attribute to just suck it up.
    Needless to say, I have no patience for bullies. Much of my family is dismayed if I defend someone (especially a child) who is shamed. There is so much passive-aggressive manipulative behavior behind these acts. I love how so many here understand the damage this causes in any authoritative environment. (especially in the church). JA, thank you for this forum and allowing others safety by not backing down! Thank you and everyone here for calling out bad behavior. What a great example to our children.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. @Keith

    I think it is VERY challenging with some of the teachings these days on what is “biblical.” Each sect has their own interpretation on what that is. Plus, if you home school, you could possibly be exposed to an inordinate amount of the “fringe” teachings.

    We still dress fairly conservative in my home, but not legalistic. You won’t catch me in a skirt or shorts higher than above my knees. But then, at 45 years and after 5 kids, I’m not comfortable showing off my stretch marks and cellulite. 🙂

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  14. “God-saturated world”

    I want to know what this means and how it intersects with the doctrine of God’s omnipresence.

    I am, perhaps, being too literal? (I do that sometimes.)

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  15. I can tell you what this teaching created in my husband who was saturated with this “self-sacrificing” headship proproganda. Through radio, his friends who were pastors, books, sermons. Years of exposure, to influential men like the Pollard mentioned in this post above, created a work-aholic who gave himself 110% everywhere he roamed outside of our home. When he was home he was exhausted and irritable. Oh, and most significantly, absent when my kids or I needed him because he had something else calling his attention. More important than us. I’m not exaggerating. My husband was and is so indoctrinated now into this that a counselor said I can give up hoping for a change. It became a patterned behavior conditioned and reinforced by church which makes my husband believe God wants him to be this way. Maybe not all men respond this way but one did. Oh, and he was sure to let us know that he read his Bible and prayed daily but never in our company because it was private. He was not the type to call the four of us together in one room to read the Bible and pray. He preferred to do it alone. Leadership, huh?!? Something has to give and stop the advance or perpetual influence of this stuff on men. I hope.

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  16. Whenever I see these patriarchalists use the term headship, I think the nickname for Richard that rhymes with thick head ship.

    Also, do these men seem like dementors from Harry Potter sort of sucking the joy out of any room they occupy?

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I don’t recall hearing this type of overt partriarchy stuff from the pulpit, when we were attending our inde-bible-fundy-ish Church. But in the women’s bible study, the teacher used to berate the shameful (according to her) practice of the wife and husband not sitting *next* to each other in the pew. She said it was a demonstration of the wife not being submissive and a show of lack of togetherness or something. Hello, my husband wanted all the kids between us on the pew, so he could have access to the boys and teach them to behave etc. He was doing his job, the way he wanted to (as opposed to the Church leader’s idea of proper decorum). But I got shamed in woman’s bible study for my husband actually doing his job as a dad. Apparantly we were not making a show of “proper married couple behavior” in Church. sheesh, let my husband be the man he is and make his own decisions and don’t dictate rules of “holy” outer appearances. Also, i was treated with contempt because half the time my husband was not there with me (at Church); hello he was at WORK. But him working Sundays put our spirituality into question. Doing his job as husband and dad? Yes, but apparently not perfect enough. You have to have excellent Church attendance as well, and couples must sit right next to one another. Just make sure you are not in some other Church member’s spot. LOL. ; ) Feels good to be done with the endless treadmill of trying so HARD to please the Rule Makers. Church Inc. will never know how hard he has worked, and all the things he has done, (in so many ways) to love and care for his family. My husband rocks, just the way he is!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. I think there may be something to the idea that many of these men do not have regular jobs outside the home.

    I also agree with BTDT that a lot of extra burdens are placed on fathers by some pastors (elders, leaders, etc.).

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  19. A leadership conference recently told men they couldn’t bring their wives to the conference to learn alongside them. I wondered at why complementarian conference organizers were dictating to men how they could and couldn’t lead their wives, since these were the same folks that teach it’s up to husbands to decide these things for their wives.

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  20. I can remember Driscoll being incredibly demeaning toward young men. I guess I never understand why someone would choose to follow these teachings when all you’re hearing is that you’re never good enough. What a sad, sad way to live the Christian life.

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  21. Oh, and most significantly, absent when my kids or I needed him because he had something else calling his attention. More important than us. I’m not exaggerating. My husband was and is so indoctrinated now into this that a counselor said I can give up hoping for a change.

    Selah, I’ve heard this story too many times to count. I’m so sorry.

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  22. But what will stop the perpetual, growing intense influence of this indoctrination of men? The women are not respected by these men, so if we have some spiritual revelation and attempt to make it known, it goes nowhere. If the children grow up into young adults and come into their own spiritual experience separate and apart from their family of origin, to which parent do you think they speak their mind or heart? Oh how my heart pines and aches for a break through to these men from a source that I cannot see or even imagine what or WHO it has to be. Maranatha.

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  23. But in the women’s bible study, the teacher used to berate the shameful (according to her) practice of the wife and husband not sitting *next* to each other in the pew.

    Clearly this woman has boundary issues, having rather seriously transgressed the Romans 14 “before his own Master he will stand or fall” principle. I mean this is just ridiculous.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Loretta,
    Hang on to that man of yours. You got yourself a good one, just the way he is. There is a man and his family at church along with the grand parents of their children. They sit in the front row every Sunday morning. Those kids are surrounded by love and so well behaved and mature for their age. Sometimes he and his wife sit side by side other times the kids in the middle. Whatever the need is at the time. I can imagine that is the way your family is. Whatever works for you shouldn’t be a problem for anyone else.

    I sit alone and move around the room. It keeps it move interesting. I love sitting in a place that other people think their names should be on.
    Blessings, Brenda

    Liked by 3 people

  25. pinkapples,
    Those are some great pictures of the bathing suits. I have to wonder as well–where are the male modesty rules. I’ve seen some guys without shirts on that I would say please put one on.

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  26. “In the Church today, there are few cows quite as sacred as the right of modern Christians to dress however they please”,
    _______________________________________

    This is called projection, a sign of a disturbed mind. In reality and as you point out,, most Christians today don’t make clothing choices in church or elsewhere a “sacred cow” at all, in fact, for most it’s a non-issue. The only people for whom it seems to be a sacred cow are Mr. Pollard and the modesty pharisees.

    They have their false god of modesty, and it is an unreasoning, stupid god.

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  27. selah said:

    But what will stop the perpetual, growing intense influence of this indoctrination of men? The women are not respected by these men, so if we have some spiritual revelation and attempt to make it known, it goes nowhere. If the children grow up into young adults and come into their own spiritual experience separate and apart from their family of origin, to which parent do you think they speak their mind or heart?

    Those are excellent questions. I think that is why keeping this discussion going is helpful. I’m always amazed at the searches that bring people to the blog. A number of years ago, I was very confused about my church. I knew things were very wrong. I did a Google search, landed at SGMSurvivors.com and thought I was reading about my own church. I was finally able to put 2 and 2 together and call it: spiritual abuse, a cult, a pastor who behaves like a narcissist, a man who devalued women and told the men to get control of their wives, etc.

    I hope that by keeping these articles going, that people will identify themselves in the articles and circumstances in the stories they read here, and will be set FREEEEEEEEEEEEEE.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Loretta, The church rules you refer to seem to contradict the concept of complementary marriage. How can a husband “lead” if he has a committee telling him how he should conduct his marriage??? Don’t these churches recognize that these arbitrary regulations undermine the husband’s ability to handle his household? Hey church guys-try to be consistent with your philosophy!!!! Seems to me everyone wants to be the top dog.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Used to be in a couple of previous churches like this. Mothers were not supposed to work outside the home, although a home-based small business was okay. Financial provision was solely the purview of the husband, even if he had to work two jobs and was rarely home as a result.

    And yet, the spiritual leadership and discipleship of the kids was supposed to be his job, as well. At least primarily. And don’t forget leading devotions with the wife.

    To top it all off, you’d better keep them out of the government schools. That usually meant homeschooling, although there were a few families who managed the cost of tuition at the nearest classical Christian academy. Naturally, this means he’d better be making a nice middle class salary at his 9-5, 40 hour/week day job with vacation time and full benefits. Especially if he’s going to tithe 10% of his income every Sunday plus occasional offerings, like a good Christian. (Preferably gross income, not net.)

    And I haven’t even gotten into the pressure to be involved with this ministry or that men’s group, this upcoming Very Important Conference, etc.

    Sometimes I think that teachings on what makes a real Christian man are completely modeled on the life of the middle/upper class full-time American pastor.

    Liked by 2 people

  30. What on earth is “headship”? Is there a “bodyship”? An “eyeship”? A “handship”?

    Perhaps the best place to start is the 1st century understanding of Kephale.

    Liked by 1 person

  31. “Some guy (I think a Pentecostal?) did a blog post a couple years ago lamenting at how he can see more and more women’s knees when he goes to church. Knees are slutty and improper, you see.”

    Chrislam

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  32. @Lydia.
    Here is the post I am thinking of:

    They’re Everywhere!! (The Ballestero Blog)
    (Post expressing the horrors of seeing women bearing their knees in church)

    The bottom of his post decrying bare knees in churches is strange. Isn’t posting a photo of bare woman knees on your anti-knees post a little like a Christian decrying hard core raunch by posting a photo of naked people having kinky sex?

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  33. @ Lydia,

    What on earth is “headship”? Is there a “bodyship”? An “eyeship”? A “handship”?

    Perhaps the best place to start is the 1st century understanding of Kephale.

    Related to this: Christian complementarians yak incessantly about “submission,” but although the Bible calls on all people to submit to all others, Comps only address this to women…
    But, more than that, they interpret the word “submit” to mean “the wife must take orders from the husband, who is the boss,” but the Bible is not defining “submit” in such a manner.

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  34. Yes headlessness is a problem in our culture. Men use their ‘loins’ to think rather than their head….. digested in their heart. its confusing unless you are willing to understand Hebrew origins of what ‘head of the church’ truly means…… an ant has a head and antenna to ‘see ahead’……. hopefully humans get theirs attached one day. Headlessness of ‘men’ is a common problem of religious terror groups like ‘ISIS and fornicators who spread STD’s…… solution to the problem is to respect elders (those over age 60)

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  35. A knee, seriously? I don’t believe I have every heard of a man saying the first part of a woman’s body that he looks at is her knees. That is right up there with an elbow. Knees are there to make it easier to move your legs and walk. Now if he was saying that showing too much cleavage is immodest, I might be inclined to agree.

    You are right Daisy. If he thinks knees are so intolerable, why is he showing the world a pair. But then perhaps he has a knee fetish.

    I was very surprised to see that the Muslim bathing suits are a real thing produced by a real company. I went on a website this morning and there they were for $29.95.

    Liked by 1 person

  36. It is Mother’s Day here in Australia and our Minister preached on Phoebe. Something he said about women in leadership in the church I wrote down because I think it should be shared. He said: ‘when you say a female cannot do this you are actually dishonouring God who made both man and woman in His own image’.

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  37. I’m happy to say that my children turned out just fine despite terrible biblical headship coming from their father.

    I’ve seen horrible kids come out of perfect Christian homes, and great kids come out of rotten homes. There’s no magic formula.

    God says he’s the real father. “…A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.”

    Liked by 3 people

  38. I think the social left has spent years denigrating fathers. I also think that putting burden after burden on fathers and claiming them as being mandated by God often results in discouragement, so fathers are being denigrated by these people as well. They may not intend it, but the end result is the same.

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  39. All the obsessing and doting over married fathers seems to imply that in the gender complementarian view, men are big fat Nothings and Losers if they have never married, are childless, are divorced or widowed.

    Daisy, it seems to me that sentiment goes far beyond the gender complementarian view. I recall being under pressure to marry when I was a 20-something in the 1980’s. According to CBMW’s website, the infamous Danvers Statement wasn’t composed until December 1987 nor was it finalized until November 1988. Besides, I suspect most evangelicals didn’t even hear about the Danvers Statement until some years afterward.

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  40. So, the way to Jesus is through the practice of “Biblical” headship?

    Call me a heretic, but I have come to understand that the way to Jesus is through the Cross.

    Call me a heretic, but I have come to understand that the way to true Biblical headship is through Jesus, not the other way around.

    Call me a heretic, but I have come to the conclusion that if a husband wishes to know whether he as achieved true Biblical headship he will likely not find the answer in Scripture. Rather, he must ask his wife.

    Liked by 2 people

  41. In joining a Bible study of Baptist women (who hinged every word of their faith on Charisma Magazine), one of the first methods of “witnessing” to me was to encourage me to give my husband “the word” that he should attend the Promise Keepers conference with their husbands, for some good “manly” fellowship.

    After researching the teachings, methods, and indoctrination of Promise Keepers, I am sorry to say that I wouldn’t let the worms in my garden attend such a dominionist type and shadow of a movement that prides itself on their definition of male headship. It has been said often by Christian men of influence over me, that a women should be kept barefoot and pregnant, with a flavor of humor, and yet I never found that jest to have one ounce of humor what so ever.

    I am sorry to admit this came from the “conservative right” arm of the religious law.

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  42. @Daisy:

    All the obsessing and doting over married fathers seems to imply that in the gender complementarian view, men are big fat Nothings and Losers if they have never married, are childless, are divorced or widowed.

    Because then how can they Outbreed the Heathen?

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  43. singleman said

    The label I call it doesn’t matter much.

    My mother was gender complementarian in outlook; she was a teen-ager in the 1950s, she brought me up to be gender comp, and I was a teen-ager in the 1980s, but gender comp as a term was not around when she was a kid.

    Never the less, she believed in the same tenets of today’s gender comp camp – that the husband is the boss in the home, women should be submissive, women should not be in positions of power (not even in political office), and so on and so forth.

    Some in my mother’s day may have called all that stuff “traditional gender roles” or “biblical gender roles,” or whatever the term was back in the day, but it’s all the same. Same set of views about women, marriage, fatherhood, parenting, etc, but different labels get slapped on it over the years.

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  44. Oh, my quote of singleman’s post was left out in my post above.

    He said,
    ———
    “Daisy, it seems to me that sentiment goes far beyond the gender complementarian view. I recall being under pressure to marry when I was a 20-something in the 1980’s. According to CBMW’s website, the infamous Danvers Statement wasn’t composed until December 1987 nor was it finalized until November 1988. Besides, I suspect most evangelicals didn’t even hear about the Danvers Statement until some years afterward.”
    ——
    In my post above, I pointed out the term one calls it doesn’t matter.

    All the views are the same – the man is the boss, women are inferior.

    It doesn’t matter if you call it complementarian, traditional roles, or whatever.

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  45. “…but different labels get slapped on it over the years.”

    Is it too much of a stretch to suggest that the appropriate term is involuntary servitude? Or how about human trafficking?

    Liked by 1 person

  46. Keith Blankenship said

    I think the social left has spent years denigrating fathers.

    If the left wing supposedly denigrates fatherhood, the right wing over-compensates in the other direction, by over-valuing it or hyping it to an insane degree, thus shaming the men who never marry, or who cannot reproduce, due to being single or infertile.

    I am right wing, but some of my views on these topics have changed. I can see now where left wingers have some valid points about some of these subjects.

    I don’t know so much that the left denigrates fathers or fatherhood so much as they are dealing with the present reality, in that they are asking society and government to help single parents more, instead of shaming and criticizing people for having kids out of wedlock and so on.

    More single women are having kids without getting married now, and this has been going on more the last several years.
    Which is not entirely a bad or stupid bonehead move, if you read studies about WHY they are doing so.

    I have read long articles explaining that there is a severe man shortage going on, even with millennials (many of whom are delaying having kids anyway).

    If a woman wants to have a kid these days, she has to fornicate and pop one out.

    Marrying the baby daddy is not an option for many of these women, because often, the only men out there are loser boys, jail bird guys who have rap sheets, man-child guys who spend all day playing X-box, the men are not getting college degrees, they cannot find steady, professional employment (they can’t afford to support a family) – the women are finding that the men out there are not marriage material.

    Women in their 20s today cannot find men who = marriage material.
    But they want to have a kid. So, they sex up some dude to get preggers and have a kid, and then they raise the kid alone.

    (It’s roughly the same situation for Baptist, evangelical Christian women of all ages since the 1980s. I grew up as a Christian, I had wanted to marry. Yet I am still single.
    There are no age-appropriate Christian single men out there for Christian women who want to marry. So, you either stay single, or you give up and marry an atheist.)

    Women, are, btw, faulted by conservatives, Republicans, and Christians no matter what choice they make in these areas.

    If you are a woman who stays a virgin past 40, staying true to biblical ethics, jerks like Al Mohler and other conservative Christians, bad mouth you in the media and on their blogs. They shame you for being celibate, single, for not marrying and for not having a kid.

    If you are a woman who does in fact have a kid (sans a hubby), they shame you for that, too. There is no winning with these guys.

    They insist that a proper biblical life can only follow ONE path, and it looks something like this:
    Get married to a clean cut, Bible thumper by the time you are 21 years old, and pop out 3 to 5 kids by the time you are like 27 years old.
    This is simply not feasible or possible for a lot of Americans these days, and it wasn’t doable or desirable when I was in college in the 1990s, either.

    Anyhow, even if it were so that the left denigrates fatherhood (my fellow social conservatives also claim this in regards to motherhood too), the solution is not to go the other extreme and put marriage and parenthood on a pedestal.

    But do you know what many conservative Christians and Republicans do? They put family, marriage, and parenthood on a pedestal, and some, like Mohler, bad mouth singles or the childless in the process.

    If you (I’m speaking in general terms to most Christians and Republicans here) want to defend parenthood and marriage, all fine by me, but please don’t do it at the expense of adult celibates, the childfree, the childless, and adult singles, which is what you (most Christians and conservatives) often do.

    Although I don’t agree with all of this author’s points on every topic (she is quite left wing), I did think she made some good points in regards to this specific topic:
    _Who Are the Fatherhood Cheerleaders Arguing With? No One Is Against Devoted Dads. _

    Like

  47. Gary said,

    Is it too much of a stretch to suggest that the appropriate term is involuntary servitude? Or how about human trafficking?

    Yes, I find much of it is the same, regardless of labels people put on it. I do think this is on a continuum.

    I do believe some Christian gender complementarians are not as bad as others. Usually the ones who practice what they call “soft comp” have functionally egalitarian marriages. But I’ve seen some who are pretty severe, the Vision Forum types who think women should not attend college and so on.

    By the way, I hope I don’t sound too harsh in regards to my mother about any of this.

    My mother was my best friend. She died a few years ago, and I miss her very much.

    When it dawned on me a few years after she died that her beliefs in these subjects were wrong (the gender complementarian type stuff) – and she in turn raised me to believe in them and live by them – I do sometimes feel anger towards her over it.

    My mother encouraged me to be gender comp (though she didn’t use that term, and I don’t think ever heard of it). I finally realized a few years after mom died, and I did a lot of reading, that Christian gender complementarian is codependency for women with Bible jargon tossed in to make it sound godly.

    My mother conflated being codependent (e.g., submissive, being gender comp, lacking boundaries, etc.) with being a good Christian woman, so I was raised that way as well.

    My life could have been so much easier, more fun, and more successful had she raised me right. Instead of raising me to be a shrinking, passive doormat (a.k.a., a traditional woman, gender comp, codependent), if she had taught me to be assertive, take risks, go after what I want, don’t care what others think about me, etc.

    But I suppose my mother was a victim of this stuff also, in a way.

    She grew up in an abusive home where her mother (my grandmother) was codependent to survive the abuser of her husband (my grandfather).

    And my grandmother (mom’s mom) was an avid church goer and strong believer in Jesus, and her mother (my grandmother) refused to assert herself, she chose to stay in an abusive marriage (but back then, I don’t know if she had much of a choice?).

    I guess my mother got the message in youth (via her mother’s role modeling) that being a biblical Christian and faithful follower of Jesus means being a doormat, especially for women.

    If I start to feel angry at my mother for raising me this way, I then remember her own childhood, that she was kind of a victim of this nonsense too, then I feel guilty and horrible about feeling angry with her. I do love her and miss her.

    But I don’t mean to sound too harsh about her in my posts. I think she meant well, but was simply ignorant or un-informed of a lot of this and didn’t realize the damage she was doing to me by raising me how she did.

    Like

  48. Sigh. Just reading the headline (haven’t even gotten to the article yet) makes me want to throw up. Seriously.

    And it’s not because I’m “bitter” or “in rebellion.”

    Like

  49. Daisy, our former church gave away copies of that booklet to everybody in the church. I’m sorry I can’t tell you what’s in it, or send it to you for your edification, but I recycled it along with all my Doug Wilson (and other patriocentric authors’) books.

    Like

  50. Re: refugee MAY 10, 2015 @ 5:15 PM

    Refugee, do you mean the web page I linked to above about the Pentecostal guy who is horrified by bare knees (title: “They’re Everywhere!!”)?

    Just my opinion, but I think if someone finds knees sexual, they’re a little weird.

    Like

  51. Darlene,

    I went and read that Wilson’s blog and, among other stupid things, is the following, “This is how he prepares us for the next thought. Man is the image and glory of God, and he is this now, and woman is the glory of man now—but in the resurrection we will see as much of a glorious transformation from our glory now and our glory then as we currently see between the sun and the stars.”

    ……..I don’t think he knows that the stars *are* suns but far far away……….
    But, then again, that’s science and we can’t be good Fundie Christians and hold any stock in science!

    Liked by 1 person

  52. It seems that those who are concerned about excess and unbiblical burdens being placed on Christian fathers are in the minority. That was the subject of the post, unless I have misread it.

    I certainly care about them. One can be a good Christian father without homesteading, working from home, having large numbers of devotions each week, etc.

    Regarding the social left and its denigration of fathers and fatherhood, it may well be that this is untrue, although I have heard and seen much evidence of it. Are there any leftist groups who support and encourage fathers? Are there positive portrayals of fathers in the old media?

    Like

  53. “often, the only men out there are loser boys, jail bird guys who have rap sheets, man-child guys who spend all day playing X-box, the men are not getting college degrees, they cannot find steady, professional employment (they can’t afford to support a family) – the women are finding that the men out there are not marriage material.”

    I am from a small town in Louisiana and ALL the guys in my town are thug wannabes, it is the biggest turn off.

    I see from my own experience that the social left is just helping women and children.
    The social right sees this as women and children escaping men, I wish my mother and me could have, even though many thinks we should have stayed (which we did) and take it.

    One of my uncles left his wife and five kids then had the electricity turned off on them. His children ate ketchup sandwiches every day, he would come home and eat McDonalds and Twinkies in front of them, he never bought them any of that.

    Thanks to the social left if my mother had had the self respect or concern for me we could have left my conservative comp Christian father and had a much better childhood and life. She never did, because she was brainwashed by the social right that women and children need to be subject to a MAN and take the abuse/misery to make the man feel good about himself.

    I am one of those women who would love to have many children and not get married. Having a head of the family, conservative comp father made me know I never want to be a slave again and would never subject my children to a man that gets a thrill out of being mean to kids.

    In ultra conservative comp land women and children can take beatings and rape, be degraded their whole lives, but men can’t take sixty seconds without having their bottoms kissed. In this arrangement it looks very much like women and children are a lot stronger and tougher then the head of the family Christian daddy/ Christian husband.

    After my father died our lives got more peaceful. My father left us in massive debt, my mother went to school, worked, she learned how to fix things herself, my father would leave things broke for weeks, because he needed to hunt and fish, my mother fixed them right away. Having only a mother is much better then a bad father and a mother. Of course MEN who know they are the kind of man women want to escape will pretend this is not true, but they have the luxury of being the man.

    Things are nicer when there is not a giant, self-worshipping, temperamental baby (comp conservative daddy) around always needing his bottom kissed.

    I learned from the man who sexually terrorized me as a little girl and my ultra comp father that many men are afraid of women and girls being able to say, no! to them, they are afraid of women and girls escaping them.

    Many women are saying I can have a baby, me and my children will live in peace, and you can just go terrorize the wall. This upsets men, like comp men who need women and children around to lord over.

    If my mother had a choice, a way, or any self worth she would have left my father, and he deserved it! If I had not been degraded and demeaned by conservative Christianity, maybe I could have escaped the vomit that terrorized me as a little girl.

    Because of female submission to men, and ultra conservative Christianity, my mother and me lived in agony to make men feel good. What men want matters, what women and little girls want does not matter and never should.

    It is a big organization of men having women and children treat them like kings/gods.

    If comp men were not so selfish and heartless they would be sick with shame of themselves, they will make up excuses because like my father and the creep who terrorized me they are on self elevating power trips. If women and little girls have to go through beatings and childhood sexual abuse, so be it. It just proves that in comp land women and little girls are much tougher then daddies and husbands.

    According to my father and the man who terrorized me when I was little everything wrong in the world is women and little girls fault. Yes, they hated little girls every bit as much as they hated grown women, my ultra conservative comp father hated raped little girls, those little (bad word) needed to keep their mouths shut and get over it, because rape is not that big of a deal.

    Sorry for bad grammar and spelling, I am dyslexic and my head of the family conservative comp father did not want to waste his money on school books.

    Like

  54. “Are there positive portrayals of fathers in the old media?”

    I see positive fathers all the time in the media, of course these are not arrogant fathers, they are loving, sweet, down to earth, humble, their children look forward to seeing them, want to talk to them more then their mothers, they actually cry when their children do nice things for them.

    Conservative men blame every body but themselves.

    Like

  55. Daisy: I am not sure how to respond to your post. Are you saying that being supportive of fathers detracts from those who don’t have children?

    Like

  56. Keith Blankenship
    MAY 11, 2015 @ 9:24 AM
    Daisy: I am not sure how to respond to your post. Are you saying that being supportive of fathers detracts from those who don’t have children?
    ———————
    It can be, yes.

    How often does culture or the church honor the singles, the celibate, and childless or child free among them?

    Evangelicals put too much emphasis on fatherhood and motherhood and the nuclear family as it is. There doesn’t need to be even more.

    Like

  57. Keith Blankenship wrote

    It seems that those who are concerned about excess and unbiblical burdens being placed on Christian fathers are in the minority. That was the subject of the post, unless I have misread it.

    I certainly care about them. One can be a good Christian father without homesteading, working from home, having large numbers of devotions each week, etc.

    Regarding the social left and its denigration of fathers and fatherhood, it may well be that this is untrue, although I have heard and seen much evidence of it. Are there any leftist groups who support and encourage fathers? Are there positive portrayals of fathers in the old media?

    I’m right wing.

    There might be some extreme crack pots on the left who are rather “anti family,” or who aren’t big on fatherhood, but there are also extreme right wingers who are way too “pro family.”

    You have the Christian Quiverfull families, for example, who feel it’s unbiblical for women to attend college, or believe it’s biblical that they must have tons of children, never use birth control.

    Republicans and conservative Christians do not minister to singles, childfree, and childless adults. They focus all their energy and effort promoting or supporting fatherhood, motherhood, having kids, and “the family.”

    One never hears these groups discussing singlehood or the childless, unless it’s to bash and criticize singles for being single and to bash people for being childless.

    Keith said,
    “Are there any leftist groups who support and encourage fathers?”

    Are there any right wring groups who support and encourage singles, celibates, divorced, widows, and the childfree? No.
    They’re all busy promoting and supporting fathers and fatherhood, which is a bad thing. Because in the process, they are neglecting and/or bad mouthing singles, childless, etc.

    Where Christians put extra burdens on fatherhood: it’s the conservatives who do this, especially the gender complementarian guys. Usually these guys bleat about motherhood (they shame women like me and put me down for being single and not having babies).

    One rarely hears them admonish men to run out, marry, and have a kid, unless we are talking about the niche group of early marriage promoters.

    But it’s your conservatives and gender comps like Mark Driscoll and Owen Strachan who refer to men as “man fails” unless they marry, have kids, and live in a very strictly defined list of what constitutes “biblical manhood,” which usually means: a man has to watch sports, drink beer, and make enough money so that the wife can stay at home and bake casseroles all days.

    While I do not agree with liberals all the time, they are correct that feminism tries to free men from those burdens and strict gender role expectations.

    BTW, not all feminists are anti-family or anti fatherhood. A lot of the ones I see on secular feminist forums are married with children of their own.

    There are some very extreme left wing people who do bash marriage, pro-creation, and family, that is true, but not all of them are like that.

    Like

  58. “It seems that those who are concerned about excess and unbiblical burdens being placed on Christian fathers are in the minority. That was the subject of the post, unless I have misread it. ”

    Dear Keith, I am sorry for changing the subject.

    One of my great grandfathers died of a heart attack before eight of his nine children graduated high school. A hurricane destroyed his crop, then the house they moved to burnt down. My grandfather said, my great grandfather was always sitting in a ladder back chair in the yard with his hand holding his bent down forehead. This image of my great grandfather haunted my grandfather his whole life.
    Another great grandfather died of a heart attack before any of his six kids graduated high school, his wife had just had twins.

    My other two great grandfathers had two and three children, they lived to know their great grandchildren, one survived Normandy. Could the stress of a lot of kids be more life threating then Normandy, my grandfather laid on the beach for days, the other solders walked over him thinking he was dead, and he survived.

    I say negative things about my grandfathers, when I was little my favorite grandfather was the one who survived Normandy, he was very nice to his grand children, great grandchildren, and girlfriend, not so much to his wife and children.
    My southern Baptist preacher grandfather I love so much and feel very sorry for him.

    “How do you define “conservative men”?”

    I know there are many different kinds of conservative men, I have a conservative cousin who is in the NRA, and is an atheist. I love him very much, he has seven brothers and sisters, out of all of them, him and one other brother are the only two who are not perverts. He has three children, bad health and is under much stress, his wife wants another child, my sister who works with him thinks if he has another child it will kill him.

    I meant men who blame everything on women, little girls, raped women, raped little girls, children, liberals, atheist, and everything but men. I know a women who was blamed for being raped at five, of course the man who raped her should not be blamed.

    I have always been a conservative republican, but four years ago when all the heartless hateful rhetoric about rape started coming up I will not go back to that until they stop treating rape victims, especially raped little girls like dirt.

    I live my life conservatively, I support gun rights, I don’t like to party, drink, I loath sleazy behavior, I don’t care if Delta Force hurts a terrorist feelings, or worse, I think child rapist and terrorist deserve the death penalty.

    But I do hate female slavery to men, and people being cruel to raped little girls.
    As a little girl living in rape, misogyny hurt me so much, arrogant spoilt men do not get to decide what misogyny is.

    I don’t want to hurt your feelings or make you mad Keith, I am sorry, I love you.

    My male cousins are much to young to be in the bad health they are in, they go to sleep in pain and work in pain. They should be able to relax and enjoy their families.

    Liked by 1 person

  59. Keith Blankenship asked,
    100pinkapples: How do you define “conservative men”?
    —————–
    100PA can of course speak for herself, but you know, it appears to me as though she gets (some or most of) her opinions about conservative (Christian) men from self-professing conservative men.

    I recently posted links to a couple of pages for Sage in some thread, that explained the links between conservative views / Christianity / gender complementarianism with domestic violence and other forms of abuse.

    These might help you understand:

    Headship and Abuse
    (link is to a blog page on Patheos)

    “Bible believing” pastors and the enabling of domestic violence
    (Another Patheos blog page. I do not agree with all the author’s views on other subjects, but this one? Yes.)

    Like

  60. 100pinkapples: You did not hurt my feelings at all. I know from your posts you have been through a lot of bad experiences. My prayers go out for all the victims of sexual abuse, you included. One side of my family had a lot of sexual and physical abuse, but my parents kept me away from the abusers, which I thank God for.

    Like

  61. “But it’s your conservatives and gender comps like Mark Driscoll and Owen Strachan who refer to men as “man fails” ”

    My little sister works at a gun store, one of her best customers is a man who stays home working out and training because he is a fighter man, I don’t know what that means, he is a stay at home dad while his wife works. He brings his five year old daughter to the gun store with him, he always finds her something pink to buy.

    My little sister calls him a tough bad @ss.

    One of my cousins wife told him after she graduates law school he can retire and fish all day, he is on cloud nine.

    If wives want to work were their husbands can take some time off to recuperate or go for their dreams people should support that.

    It seems these people have an issue with happiness.

    Liked by 1 person

  62. “my parents kept me away from the abusers”

    Dear Keith, please tell your parents they are super cool in my book;)

    Like

  63. 100pinkapples: I would tell them but they are both dead. Thank you for the compliment, though. Both had their problems, but they kept me safe. My mother was especially cautious re:potential sexual abusers. She warned us about them at a time when it was probably not commonly done. Both her experiences and the murder of a little boy in our county probably spurred her to talk to us about it.

    Like

  64. Yesterday was my mother’s birthday, was well as Mother’s day. It brought back a lot of memories. She was not at all “progressive” or “liberal” but she cared about us. Dad did, too, but there were no known abusers on his side of the family.

    Like

  65. Fathers (as well as mothers and the nuclear family) have entire conservative Christian organizations behind them, who rake in millions of dollars in donations.

    Such groups may toss out a token article about singleness now and then, but they largely promote Marriage ‘N Family, Marriage ‘N Family, and…. Marriage ‘N Family.

    A few years ago, Focus on the Family was soliciting five million dollars from Christians to make a movie about the Importance of Family.

    Which of course you know will likely include impassioned pleas to consider the importance of Fathers in the lives of Children, and how sad it is that so many kids today may not have a dad in their lives.

    The ERLC mentioned the Focus on the Family movie on this page (at least I think it’s the same film – FOTF was making more then one film about The Family, if I understand correctly):
    Jim Daly discusses new Focus on the Family film “Irreplaceable”

    The Christian Post has an article mentioning the five million number:
    “Focus on the Family Launches $5 Million Project Targeting Family Breakdown, Social Ills” by Tyler ONeil.

    Will FOTF ever raise five million to make a film extolling adult singleness, the childless and celibacy, or even think about making such a film for any amount? Highly doubtful.

    They or some other group – that Sherwood Baptist church, perhaps? – made an entire movie extolling the virtues and importance of Fatherhood, called Courageous.

    The Courageous movie was filled with patriarchal / conservative views about how fathers should raise their daughters, btw.
    Sherwood Baptist Church’s “Courageous” | CBE international

    Will Sherwood Baptist, or any other church or Christian movie making house, ever make a movie defending, promoting, and showcasing never-married, celibate adults, or ones showcasing divorced people, or widowers or the childfree or childless? Probably not.

    Like

  66. My Dad taught me to shoot, fight, work,read, be honest, and never give in. He talked to me about the Bible and theology, but it was not really systematic. One of my best memories of him is reading the junior edition of Encyclopedia Britannica with him.

    Like

  67. I went back and am re-reading that ERLC page I linked to in closer detail.

    Here is part of what it says:

    And yet, the answers are right in front of us. We find the blueprint for family throughout history and culture. It is time-tested and reliable. Most importantly, it is laid out before us in the pages of Scripture. If the Church could just recapture that vision and embrace God’s design for family, we could revolutionize our society.

    …When we allow the biblical understanding of the family to become watered down, we’re inviting trouble. The Bible does not define “family.” It just does not, or not like that.

    There is no clear cut passage that says “family” can only mean “a man and woman who marry by the time they are 25 and have at least three children,” but this is how a lot of conservative Christians understand the term, and any other configuration is deemed a “breakdown.”

    The Bible does not order anyone to marry at all, and does not cite an age by which a person must marry, or if they have kids, or how many, certainly not under NT teachings.

    A lot of the Old Testament men we read about how several wives each, with 300 children. Why aren’t Christians today promoting that as a family unit? It’s in the Bible too.

    It may have not been God’s intent, but I’m not sure “Adam + Eve + Kids” was necessarily the only viable type of family there could be, in God’s view.

    There are cultural differences, too. In Latin American nations, it is (or for many years was) common for several generations to live together -the little kids would live with their parents, and with the parent’s parents (grandma), and that was considered “family.”,

    I think in Japan that was somewhat the case too, or used to be (?).

    In the USA, due to the economy, some people are choosing to live that way to save money now. There are several generations under one roof.

    Yet, evangelicals continue to assume that the Bible teaches a family = only two adults living under one roof with their kids, even though the Bible does not teach this.

    I don’t know if it’s that accurate to extend too much out of Adam and Eve on this. They had some kids together, but one son murdered the other.

    It just keeps looking to me as though other American social conservatives keep reading their favored cultural standard back into the Bible (a 1950s era nuclear family) and declaring this as “God’s intent” and a magical cure-all for society.

    Regarding this from the ERLC article about the Focus on the Family movie:

    There’s a reason why God repeatedly uses the language of family to describe our relationship with him.

    But your “church family” is supposed to be your family after you come to Christ (that is, people who may not be related to you but who accepted in Jesus).

    You are not supposed to place a priority on your spouse or kids or parents or grandparents, siblings, or aunts.

    FOTF (like many Christians do) is actually re-defining “family.” Jesus did not define “family” in the Gospels to mean “the woman who gave birth to you and the other children she gave birth to.” He actually de-emphasized that view. (Matthew 10: 34-37, Luke 8:21)

    Like

  68. I messed up my blockquote above. I hope everyone can tell where the quote ends and my remarks start. 🙂

    The ERLC quote ends with, “…When we allow the biblical understanding of the family to become watered down, we’re inviting trouble. ”

    My comments start at, “The Bible does not define “family.” It just does not, or not like that.”

    Like

  69. “My mother was especially cautious re:potential sexual abusers. She warned us about them at a time when it was probably not commonly done. Both her experiences and the murder of a little boy in our county probably spurred her to talk to us about it.”

    I love people who can learn from what they read, or hear about, and make their decisions so those things don’t happed to them or their loved ones. I love my mother, but she is the most naïve, clueless person I have ever known, I have ten year old cousins who are more street smart then her, it is sad.

    “My Dad taught me to shoot, fight, work,read, be honest, and never give in.”

    Have you ever read,
    The Mission, the Men, and Me: Lessons from a Former Delta Force Commander?

    Even though I am a girly girl, I like action books were terrorist get what they have coming to them.

    Maybe you should have one of your kids get you the book for fathers day, it sounds like you would like it.

    Caution, I have read many military books because I like for terrorist to pay, the Navy Seal books talk about all the sex they are having and all the beer they are drinking, Delta Force do not, they tell the action stories, I think that is more mature.

    Like

  70. Pastor Pollard is only reiterating what the Bible teaches us. No, men in their own strength do not possess the ability to lead their wives and children to Christ, they will fail every time on his own. But with the focus on Christ, through a work of the Holy Spirit and continued repentance a man can lovingly lead his family sacrificially. Pastor Jeff is doctrinally lined up with scripture. Be barean and search the scriptures for your self to see if these things are true.

    Like

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