To Be A Great Dad

Posted: April 11, 2013 in Family, Religion
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So what does it take to be a great dad? It takes heart. Everything we do comes from our heart. You either want to do it, or you do not. It’s as simple as that.

Dad’s are more important in the direction their children will take than media, society, or they themselves realize. Having talked with several kids over the years the number one thing I hear is,”I wish my dad were around.” There are literally thousands of adults walking around on any given day wondering,”Why did my dad leave?” There are thousands of children following negative paths because dad left. To be a great dad you must be in the game.

To be a great dad you must lead by example. Your kids are watching and so are their friends. If you are married or single, take time to cook meals, sit down and talk with your children at dinner, spend time with them doing an activity that they love, if you dislike something, do it anyways. Be open and talk them about the hot taboo topics. If you do not, their friends will. These things teach your child or children that you are interested in them, and that sometimes you have to do things that you dislike. To be a great dad you must show interest and lead by example.

Children will often test the waters and see how far they can swim. We know that our abilities only allow us to swim so far. To be a great dad you must discipline. Discipline can be accomplished a variety of ways and there are several books that discuss this. The key is that you let your child/children know in a loving way that you are the leader and that they must follow. I watch National Geographic shows with my kids and tell them,”Look at the animals. Who is leading and disciplining? The father and the mother. Even the animals understand.” To be a great dad you must discipline.

All over the World children starve or lack the material comforts that we are afforded in G8 countries. We buy our kids so much, that often we have sacks of items to give to thrift stores. Teach your children to appreciate and value what they have. Teach them not to waste food. Teach them to conserve. Teach them to care for everything they have. To be a great dad you must teach your child/children to appreciate.

When a child is born they know nothing. Children learn through experience and practice. You must teach your child the path you want them to take. When children fail, dads we have to self-reflect, and ask ourselves,”What are we teaching our kids?” From learning how to ride a bike, swimming, fishing, or the many other things children can do, fathers must teach. To be a great dad you must teach your child skills and challenge them.

At some point you will hear,”Dad I messed up.” During this time it is wise to stay calm, ask questions, and understand the situation. Show empathy and compassion no matter how much you want to explode in anger. Your child coming to you means they want help, dad’s advice, and possibly just an ear to share whats on their mind. To be a great dad show empathy and compassion.

Child: “Dad you forgot my newspaper for my homework.” Dad: “Sorry. I forgot to pick it up.”  Dad’s often make mistakes. To be a great dad admit your mistakes.

Father: “Hello, boss. I am sick and unable to come to work today.” If your child is nearby, and know you are not sick, you just taught them dishonesty. Often we rationalize dishonesty. We take a pencil home from work, yet we feel guilty with stealing a dime.  None of us are perfect, but as father’s we must do our best and make a conscious effort to be honest. To be a great dad be honest.

If your married, honor and value your wife. Husband: “Did you empty the trash?” Wife: “No, I forgot.” Husband: “Do you always forget?”  That word always is a killer. I must admit that I have been guilty of this word. The kids listen. Father’s must make effort to show appreciation for what the wife does, and value her work. When you kiss your wife in front of your children, you show them your love her. Show affection often. Tell her you love her. To be a great dad, value your wife.

In summary to be a great dad you need to be in the game, show interest, lead by example, discipline, teach them to appreciate, teach them skills,  challenge them, show empathy, compassion, admit mistakes, be honest, and value your wife. This will go along way in your quest to be a great dad.

One final thought, which is a preference of mine,  is to follow God’s teachings to the best of your ability, and be an active church member with your family. The reason I state this is we often fall short of the glory of God. I have on many occasions. I have prayed more than once saying,”Dear Lord I have messed up and I am not worthy to be in your presence.” The Bible has so many inspirational stories that give us insight on being a great dad and why we should follow them. It also gives a higher source to look towards than man. I have read many self-help books, psychology books, and I love the resource that all the professionals provide, but the Bible exceeds them all in my opinion. The church provides an outlet to socialize and share with other believers that are working towards, or already on a path of positive change. When my children ask,”Dad why do you love God?” I say,”I have been around the opposite of God. Drugs, alcohol, criminals, and people who practice the opposite of truth, and I cannot find peace, truth, love, or honesty among them. When I am in church, or in prayer, I feel a sense of love, peace, and happiness. God provides, Satan takes away.”

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