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This past week I had the great privilege of spending the week 13 boys (my oldest boy included) and leaders of the First Baptist Keller R.A.s. I wasn’t exactly sure what I was getting myself into, but I couldn’t let that stop me. And boy, am I glad I didn’t. I had a refreshing week in the outdoors. I connected with my son in new ways. I was challenged as a dad. All in all…it was a great week!

 

 

 

IMG_2901During the week we talked about being “The King’s Men.” Our Camp Pastor, Eric Armstrong of Woods Chapel in Arlington, TX, took us through several key passages relating to spiritual warfare beginning with Ephesians 6: The Armor of God. We talked about waving the white flag of surrender to God, acknowledging that we are fighting on the wrong side. Then we looked at 1 Peter 5:8-9 and the tactics of our enemy as “roaring lion, looking for anyone he can devour.” We concluded the week with The Great Commission in Matthew 28, looking at “the weapon we use (The Bible), when/where we should go, and having the heart of a warrior of God.” Now, that we have surrendered our life, joined the “good guys,” been given the armor of God, and know our enemy’s tactics, we must live in full obedience as part of God’s Kingdom in this way: “Hear the Word of God, Know the Word of God, Share the Word of God.”

IMG_2921As a dad, I got to watch and come along side him as my son explored new things. I was so proud of him. I watched this week as he grew spiritually, physically, emotionally, and psychologically. Each new thing he encountered, he tried with eagerness. He listened intently as the Word of God was preached and sang songs of praise to God.

Taking a step back, I was refreshed to see a program (Royal Ambassadors), that I had myself had basically lost interest in, invest time and effort into encouraging my son to grow into the man God wants him to be. Sadly, I had long-since forgotten that the Royal Ambassadors are first and foremost about discipling young men, not just “teaching missions.” While teaching missions is a key component of the R.A. strategy, the true purpose of R.A.s is found the first line of the R.A. pledge:

As a Royal Ambassador, I will do my best to become a well-informed, responsible follower of Christ…

Men, I encourage you to be about the task of loving your sons and training them “to become well-informed, responsible followers of Christ.”

Well-informed = Know God’s Word. Read it, study it, memorize it, live it.

Men, we cannot teach our sons to do this if we, ourselves, are not.

Responsible = take seriously God’s Word and its call to imitate Christ. Be a good steward of the message of Christ first by living it out (if you don’t live it, you don’t believe it), then sharing it with others.

Men, we must lead by example in the area of responsibility. Responsibility is a life skill; It really cannot be taught, it must be observed in another who, by their example, challenge others to do the same.

I was challenged this week, as a dad, to step up and focus on training my son to be the man God desires him to be.