From Dynamic Dads (a book I recently finished reading):
Once we realize it’s impossible to be a perfect father, we can redirect our energies toward fathering effectively. However, in order to get there, we need to take a somewhat painful step. We must examine the specific areas in our fathering skills where we fall especially short.
- discipline – clear rules explained, child understands the violation, apply punishment calmly, restore & reinforce with love and acceptance [yeah… calmly isn’t my strong point]
- share – democracy [yeah… I’m not that great at sharing either…]
- listen – everyone
- lead – with grace; not demanding; a servant leader of the family [and I’m a bit demanding…]
ENCOURAGE (these kind-of all blend together…)
- adoration – sincere verbal praise in their presence
- praise – recognition and attention
- encouragement – focus and praise strengths; compliment!
- acceptance – unconditional approval; affirmation!
APPLY (but don’t only think about yourself but the whole family!)
- identity – know who you are, where you came from and be it!
- community – authentic, open and encouraging group of other guys for support … like my G Men … I liked this paragraph in the book:
Real fellowship can and does occur when God’s grace guides a group by the power and direction of the Holy Spirit. Walls are broken down and true encouragement is given and received. If you’re hesitant to jump into a men’s small group, let me say that trying to live the Christian life alone simply doesn’t work. The heart cry of much of the New Testament is that we live in community. I urge you to become intentional about forming solid male friendships with like-minded Christ followers. Once you get a taste of true community, you’ll never go back to your old Lone Ranger days of living the Christian life in isolation…
Jesus Christ was the epitome of masculinity. He was caring, courageous, and kind. He fearlessly took on the phony religious leaders of His day and lovingly ministered to outcast women. He surrounded Himself with twelve men for fellowship and community. Jesus was no Lone Ranger. Are you?
- integrity – not perfection but wholeness; at peace. work in progress!
- ministry – gifts->purpose->energy->mission
FATHERING = main gift of service to God
… and most important! I can’t claim that putting it as ‘most important’ has really been my view; most certainly not if you looked at my involvement in a bunch of things. Here’s hoping there’s a change… well, maybe just ‘progress’ in some areas.