Suicide, Violence, and Wise Fathers (+Podcast)
Each gender has its own important role to play in parenting. Fatherlessness is the single best predictor of violence in young men. Masculinity can become “toxic” in the absence of the wise Patriarch—but it’s just an aggressive form of sin. Masculinity itself is not inherently toxic. However, both masculinity and femininity have positive and negative expressions: the Wise King vs. the Tyrant. The Great Mother vs. the Evil Stepmother. The point is to develop the most positive iterations of masculinity and femininity. And for men to develop and channel masculinity properly, they need their fathers.
Did you know:
- 63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes (US Dept. Of Health/Census) – 5 times the average.
- 90% of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes – 32 times the average.
- 85% of all children who show behavior disorders come from fatherless homes – 20 times the average. (Centers for Disease Control)
- 80% of rapists with anger problems come from fatherless homes –14 times the average. (Justice & Behavior, Vol 14, p. 403-26)
- 71% of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes – 9 times the average. (National Principals Association Report)
One of God’s overlooked blessings to His people is in helping fathers and pointing out how important they are. In Malachi 4, it is written,
“Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the LORD comes. And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction.”
When fathers fail, nations fail. When fathers abandon their children of shirk their role as wise patriarchs, destruction results. Below is a speech that Jeff Hostetter—who has called Ghana his home for over 3 decades, helping build families there—gave on the importance of the family.