The Journey of Fatherhood Begins
I remember over 22 years ago when Sarah, our firstborn, came into this world. She was brand new, but so was I. She started her journey in this life and I started my journey as a father.
We've been through all the stages of parenting with Sarah, we're in the final and best stage right now, Friend. It's quite a joy. But getting here wasn't easy. We're still in almost every stage of parenting with our other children. You see, Sarah, led the way for six more children to come into this world.
So, there's Sarah, Andrew, Natalie, Mark, John, Olivia and JuliAnna. Nancy and I believe we have completed our portion of God's assignment to
Gen 1:28 God blessed them and said to them,
"Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it...
Malachi 2:15 Has not the LORD made them one?
In flesh and spirit they are his. And why one?
Because he was seeking godly offspring.
So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith with the wife of your youth.
Daddy's Soft Heart Comes Out
At first the child is totally dependent on you. You learn a lot about being a Dad in this phase. Your protective instincts kick in. Your provider instincts. Areas of love and softness that are deep in your heart come out toward these little ones not only because they need it but because that's a safe environment for a Dad to express these things. Those little ones get more of Daddy's heart than any because it's safest for the Dads there.
Daddy Gets To Be The SuperHero
As the child grows and begins to talk, Daddy can become the super-hero he always dreamed of being when he was young. Now, in these young one's eyes Daddy is the superhero. So, men, guard your stature well. Don't stumble in these young one's eyes. Protect their hearts. Protect their image of you. This is not fantasy to them, it is reality. You are that important and that powerful in their eyes.
Watch Them Blossom
You never know what's in your child until they begin to blossom. God put gifts in there, you have to be watching, waiting, expecting, exploring, questioning, discovering, dreaming, praying. There's something in that child waiting to be discovered. You, Dad, can be the one to help your child find out who they are.
Train up a child in the way he should go:
and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
My son, Andrew, right now works for a computer software company doing amazing work in a technical support position. Andrew's always been good at computers. When he was very young, probably six or seven, he and I used to enjoy playing a computer game where there was a space ship flying around shooting things. But we got to this one level that neither he nor I could beat. One day I came home from work and he had this bright look on his face; he couldn't wait to tell me, "Dad, I beat the level!" I said, "No way! How'd you do that?" He said, "I found the editor part of the software and I went in and erased the things we couldn't get past." We went and looked at what he had done. Sure enough, since we couldn't beat the program he edited the program so we could beat it.
Andrew was blossoming right there before my eyes. When he was 14 he installed and implemented an internet based grading program necessary for a school of ministry I was overseeing. He did it by himself. I was watching him blossom. So we nurtured that. We talked about that. We encouraged that.
Andrew is a blessing to many people now because of the skills and abilities we saw in him and nurtured to maturity.
You should never underestimate the value of a coach. My youngest brother, Greg, is about the same age as Bret Favre. Greg has about the same strong healthy build. He can throw a football with pinpoint accuracy 70 yards. He's sharp. He thinks fast on his feet. Greg could have been a great ball player, he has all the natural equipment. Greg never had the one thing that would have made him great. A coach.
Once you discover the giftings in your child, give them opportunity to grow in that area. If you don't know or understand that area you can learn enough about it to give your child some encouragement. Speak to them. Ask them questions. Let your child feel that your heart is with them in their pursuit of greatness in whatever area they pursue…. TO BE CONTINUED