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Sunday, January 10, 2010

Captain of the Ship

As the head of a large household I feel I have a responsibility to younger, less experienced fathers to give them the guidance they need to be effective leaders. One of the most important things to remember as a man in today's world is that a man in his home should be like a captain aboard his ship:
  1. He should be in complete control at all times. He doesn't have to be a Captain Bligh about it, but if a ship is to be kept in top shape and off the dangerous, rocky shores the captain must demand complete obedience to his ever command. Of course if he merely suggests that everyone is in bed by 9:00 with lights out at 9:30 and yet everyone still stays up until 11:00 most nights it can't be said that he isn't in complete control.
  2. He should have the utmost respect from each of his crew members. Of course there will be incidents such as when his six-year-old daughter, who had heard him scream, “Shut the door!” for the millionth time this winter when she stuck her head back into the room from the freezing outside and retorted, “If you care about the door so much, why don't you marry it!” But she did say it with respect.
  3. He should be treated like a god and any trivial, personal habit ought to be ignored. I can, however, overlook the fact that all my crew looks at me whenever there is a strange smell in the room even though there is no proof that they should be looking at me.
  4. He must demand that they respect his personal space to keep a proper distance between the officer and the enlisted. I will tolerate standing on my feet to dance, holding onto my fingers so that they can walk up me and flip over backward, climbing onto my lap, and jumping onto my back after family prayer only for a three or four more years before I get tough.
  5. It can be assumed that he does everything perfectly. This should never be questioned. When his eight-year-old son responded to his captain's “That's not too bad,” after digging a perfect hole to plant a tree with, “Yeah, but it's not too good either,” he wasn't actually finding fault.
No, any man who doesn't lay down the law with an iron hand in his own home does not deserve the sweet hugs, and kisses, and the love of his crew.

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