Sunday, June 20, 2010

A Dad's Perspective

Fathers Day is a time when we honor our dads by showing our appreciation for them.  While I'm sure we all could find some way to honor our dads every single day - it is so good to have a special day (nationally) when we honor them.  I hope today you have the opportunity to be with your dad.  If your dad has already left, what could be more heart-warming than gathering with your family to remember how awesome he was!

I wanted to share with you today from a Father's perspective.  One of the most incredible experiences of my entire life is to be a dad.  From the day your first-born arrives this awesome experience begins!  Connie and I have 4 children, all of whom are married and out on their own now.  Now we have 7 grandchildren (and counting)!  The "dad" experience keeps getting better and better.

Today I am remembering some of the awesome experiences I've had as a dad.  Of course, I remember the day on which all of our children were born.  Each time was different from the previous, and was equally exciting for me!  I remember hiding in the closet many nights just before the kids would go to bed to growl like the boogie man in order to scare them from the closet.  Of course they knew it was me and knew I was in the closet.  They even knew I was not the boogie man.  Yet they loved it because I would jump out of the closet and "get" them.  (I had to do it for all 4 in 3 different rooms.)  I remember going on vacations and playing in the pool with them.  I remember the football, fishing, band concerts, family Bible studies, little league baseball games, school conferences, youth group trips, missions trips, graduations, weddings, and grandchildren births!  Another overwhelming experience for me as a dad was gaining 3 more daughters and another son through marriage.  In addition to 4 incredible children...we've been given 4 incredible children-in-law, which as far as I'm concerning gives us 8 children all together!

Getting married doesn't make you a dad.  I learned over time how to be a dad.  How did I learn this?  I learned from the Bible.  My children know that I have never been close to perfect at being a dad.  However they know I love God and base my everything (including them) on Jesus.  Connie and I have made it a point to be as real as we believe the Bible teaches us to be with our children.  This includes making some mistakes and admitting to them we are wrong when we do make them.  We are convinced that living by God's principles allows His power to influence your children in Godly ways.  It was my responsibility as a dad to see that our children were raised in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.  As a dad, I am not ashamed to say that sowing God's principles in our children has produced Godly character in our children.

Being a dad carries extreme responsibility.  It carries extreme power to influence and mold.  Please realize being a dad carries the prime responsibility of preparing your children for life.  If you live for Jesus, teach them how to.  They will live for Jesus when they leave the nest.  Don't let Barney or Disney or Nickelodeon teach them.  Don't even let Children's Church or Christian TV be their only source of teaching.  You teach them.  Live for Jesus 24 X 7.  Be real.  Be honest.  Know that the greatest influence you'll ever have on anyone is on your children.

To all dads out there...I'm praying for you.  You have an awesome responsibility.  But you also have before you one of the greatest experiences of your entire life! 

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