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On DutyWhen I was a young man I can clearly remember going to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. For anyone who has ever been to this national monument, you will remember the focus, the responsibility, and the purpose to which the soldiers guarded the tomb. The “changing of the guard” is an amazing experience in which the guard being relieved states, “Post and orders remain as directed.” To which the oncoming guard replies, “Orders acknowledged.”

Several years ago I was chasing my career – as a highly successful teacher and winning basketball coach – and my post at home was empty. I would spend every ounce of energy from myself instructing students, mentoring teachers, and then coaching athletes sometimes up to 16 hour days; and what my wife was getting at home was the left-overs. I gave everyone my best and my family got the rest.

I can remember there was one night, where God awoke me and convicted me of my sin against my wife and family. They were grateful that I provided for them and I was successful in the process of that provision, but they needed more than a mere provider. I needed to have the focus, the responsibility, and the purpose that God calls to a husband.

Husbands need to come home from work ready to say “orders acknowledged” to lovingly lead their families. I have found that serving my wife through listening to her, studying her, cherishing her, nourishing her, and shepherding her (although I am a total work in progress) is my first ministry as called by my Lord and Savior. My children and their spiritual, emotional, and social development is my calling as well.  It is my joy to instruct them, shepherd them, and love them through the Word of God. This cannot be done by simply giving them the “left-overs” or taking that “me” time every day.

It is not easy. It is hard. It must be intentional. It is taking your post.

So I encourage you as a husband to come home from work ready to love your first job – your job as a Godly husband and father. Study your wife, pray with her, read God’s Word with her, laugh with her, and love her sacrificially. Play with your kids, joke with your kids, read God’s Word with them, lead them in worship at church, and love them sacrificially.

In other words, take your post and state clearly:

“Orders acknowledged.”