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Newsletter Articles. October 2007

Family is Alive and Well.

Man on the Run!

Raising Fools.

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Family is “Alive and Well”!

Despite the great many attacks that have impacted families over the past century, we are delighted to report that FAMILY is “ALIVE AND WELL”!

Attacking marriage is a passion for many people who promote the idea that wedlock is dead. One of the ways they support their deception is through the misuse of statistics. (remember the saying: “There are lies, damn lies, and statistics!”) Yet the evidence is that most marriages, almost 70% of them, persist until the death of the spouse. That’s a far cry from the impression we are given that more than half of all marriages are doomed to failure.

The New York Times ran an article earlier this month, by two assistant professors from the University of Pennsylvania. Entitled “Divorced from Reality”, the article puts the record straight on the viability of marriage in the USA.

“The story of ever-increasing divorce is a powerful narrative. It is also wrong. In fact, the divorce rate has been falling continuously over the past quarter-century, and is now at its lowest level since 1970. While marriage rates are also declining, those marriages that do occur are increasingly more stable. For instance, marriages that began in the 1990s were more likely to celebrate a 10th anniversary than those that started in the 1980s, which, in turn, were also more likely to last than marriages that began in the 1970s.”

When the numbers are analysed it seems that the most unstable marriages are those of the young people who were most impacted by the Sexual Liberation cultural revolution of the 1960’s. Marriages established in the 1970’s were undermined by the pervasive “me-ism” of the era, where the idea of free sex had been vigorously promoted and old institutions, such as God, family and marriage, were undermined with vigour. However, as we move away from that tidal wave of counter-culturalism, we are seeing the resilience of marriage re-emerge.

The old agenda of removing marriage to make way for unrestrained sexual activity is still being pushed. And in order to do so the promoters have resorted to smoke and mirrors, rather than reality.

And not only is marriage proving its enduring viability, but, along with it is God’s institution of family. Here at Family Horizons we are thrilled to provide resources to the thousands of families which are rejecting the lies and choosing to value what God values.

So, next time someone suggests to you that marriage is a failing institution, be sure to point out to them that they have been fooled by social engineers who want them to believe that lie.

Both Marriage and Family are explored in much greater depth in two key books which we recommend to you. FAMILY HORIZONS – Creating Families of Destiny’ and ‘MARRIAGE HORIZONS - Creating Marriages That Work’.

Click here to go to the Family Horizons Shop.
 

Man on the RUN!!!!
by Chris Field

Some men love to be busy. A man who is running in all directions gives the appearance of being a “mover and a shaker”. And men love to “run” things. “Let me RUN this by you…” “I’m RUNNING for office” “I’ve got to RUN!”

But sometimes sheer busy-ness is a means of RUNNING AWAY from other things. Just as keeping busy helps people forget their worries or their pains, keeping busy can be an excuse for not getting to things that are important.

I was approached by a businessman last month and he shared with me how his marriage presents a number of challenges. He asked if I could assist and I offered to be available.

A week or so later, when I phoned him to follow up, he was BUSY! I don’t mean he was too busy to talk with me, but he was just flat-out busy. He had clients to service and trips to make here and there. It was pretty heady stuff and he was getting a kick out of being a “man on the run!”. But what about the marriage? That would have to wait, as it had many times before.

This man is not consciously running away from his challenges, but in practice he is putting busy-ness ahead of things he knows need his attention.

Many a man will bury himself in his career and material aspirations, only to later find that his wife and children feel abandoned by him. He may protest that he has provided SO MUCH for them, but the common reply is, “We would rather have YOU than the money!”

Being a Man on the Run can be an escape. It can be a way of alleviating the conscience, so men don’t feel they have an excuse for neglect.

Now, let me say a word about “neglect”. Husbands are commanded to “love” their wife. In fact, that command is repeated in the New Testament. Most things that are repeated are being reinforced, because they are likely to be overlooked or taken for granted. So, why did God choose to reinforce the command for husbands to “love” their wife?

Most men are prone to neglecting their wife. It is the most common form of abuse a man commits against his marriage. When men bury themselves in work or other commitments they are simply giving in to their most common weakness. They are choosing to neglect their marriage, wife, children and family, in preference for something else.

[Women also abuse their marriage – to find out how just read MARRIAGE HORIZONS and MENDING MARRIAGES]

So, Mr Man on the Run, it’s time to take off your track shoes and put on your slippers. It’s high time you reviewed your priorities and gave your marriage the attention and investment it deserves. Remember, the most important investment you can make into your wife and your children is “YOU”. Give yourself to them and the rewards will be rich and abundant.

Because MANHOOD is such a vital issue Dr Field has recently completed an excellent book titled, ‘MANHOOD HORIZONS - Be a Man’s Man in God’s World’. Find out more about this excellent book by clicking here
.

Raising ‘Fools’.

I recall an occasion about 20 years ago when several grandmothers expressed their disapproval with me after a meeting. They were upset because I had dared to suggest that “foolishness is bound in the heart of a child”. I had said that every cute little baby is a ‘fool’ who needs to be properly trained in order to become free from that foolishness.

The grandmothers, in their 70’s and 80’s were convinced that babies were innocent and pure, but that when parents are angry toward them or smack them, the parents are teaching the children how to act badly.

The position of these older, church ladies was the direct opposite of the observation made by the “wisest man that ever lived”, King Solomon, 3,000 years ago (see Proverbs 22:15).

Solomon’s ancient wisdom has proven sound for 30 centuries, as a valuable part of the Bible. When Queen Victoria of England was asked, “What made the British Empire great?” she replied, “The Bible.” Yet last century western secular humanists vigorously promoted alternative views to the Biblical truth upon which whole empires were built.

The popularised idea is that children are born innocent and learn to harm others by parental use of discipline. Such a proposition is nonsense to anyone who takes note of how children behave. Parents see first-hand how children display selfish, wilful and hurtful behaviour, simply to get their own way, when there has been not modelling of such behaviour.

But even Governments have bought into the prevailing idea that children are innocent and neutral and only learn to hurt others through the use of parental discipline. An Australian website for the Government of the state of Victoria clearly states that government’s belief that children’s actions spring from parental discipline.

“Using physical punishment or inflicting pain on a child to stop them from misbehaving only teaches them that it is OK to solve problems with violence. Children learn how this is done from watching their parents use physical violence against them.”

This is the same nonsense which the angry Christian grandmothers came out with. So, why do I call it “nonsense”? It is nonsense because it contradicts what God tells us in the Bible. It is nonsense because it contradicts the observation of the wisest man that ever lived. It is nonsense because any observant person knows it to be false. And it is nonsense because secular research concludes that a child’s bad behaviour is inherently their own.

As recently as this month Professor Richard Tremblay, Professor of paediatrics, psychiatry and psychology at the University of Montreal, Canada spoke to a Royal Society conference in London and effectively debunked what governments and little old ladies claim to be true. Professor Tremblay’s findings, as reported to the Royal Society and published by the BBC on October 15th, include such basic realities as, aggressive behaviour is natural in young children.

Professor Tremblay’s research indicates that aggression is natural and needs to be regulated, usually by the intervention of parents. A child’s aggressive tendencies need to come under their emotional control. Tremblay’s concern is that, if children do not gain that control they will grow to be aggressive adults.

Aggression is "rather a behaviour like crying, eating, grasping, throwing, and running, which young humans do when the physiological structure is in place." But most youngsters learn to regulate these "natural" behaviours with age, experience, and brain maturity.

But what about the myth of the “holy child”? What about the idea that children don’t know anything about aggression until their parents smack them? If Professor Tremblay is right that children have an inherent tendency to act inappropriately, but need to be taught to behave properly, isn’t that somewhat reminiscent of “foolishness is bound in the heart of a child but the rod of correction drives it far from him”?

If Solomon is right, and I am confident that he is, then all the people who reject godly discipline for their children are Raising ‘Fools’.

Family Horizons recommends ‘PARENTING HORIZONS - Empowering Parents to Build Generations’. A fuller explanation of God’s wisdom for training children and removing foolishness from their hearts is given in that excellent book by Dr Chris. Click here to order now.

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Family Horizons Ministries - for Family, Marriage and Parenting. In association with Living Word Outreach Inc. Australia.