What kind of father are you?
Are you the kind of father who is present, engaged, teaching, disciplining and loving?
Or are you the type of father who is absent, unstable, weak, and effeminate?
Pope John XXIII wrote,
“It is easier for a father to have children than for children to have a real father.”
There is no greater time in history where the need for good fathers is more readily apparent than now.
According to the United States Department of Justice, fatherless homes account for:
- 63% of suicides under 18
- 90% of homeless and runaway youths
- 85% of behavioral disorders
- 71% of high school dropouts
- 70% of juvenile incarceration
- 75% of youth substance abuse
- 71% of teenage pregnancies
Those are sobering statistics. Many of the problems we face as a society can be traced back to the lack of fathers and the lack of good fathers.
Our world needs good fathers. We have a duty, as men, to be good fathers.
So what IS a good father?
We need to look no further than to Scripture.
A good father:
- Instructs his children (Proverbs 22:6)
- Shows compassion but not weakness (Psalm 103:13)
- Provides for his family (1 Timothy 5:8)
- Disciplines but does not provoke (Ephesians 6:4)
- Shows tough love (Proverbs 13:24)
- Is a refuge for his children (Proverbs 14:26)
- Teaches Scripture (Deuteronomy 6:6-7)
- Leaves an inheritance (Proverbs 23:24)
- Never gives up on his children (Luke 15:11-32)
- Loves his wife (Ephesians 5:25)
- Manages his household (1 Timothy 3:4)
- Prays for his children (1 Chronicles 29:19)
These are the guidelines for us as fathers. It is up to us to live them out.
There is no more important role for a man than to be a father.
Everything else a man does dies with him. His career, his achievements, his hobbies, and personality; none of it lasts. But a man can leave no greater legacy than well-raised children.
American businessman and inventor, Charles Kettering, wrote,
“Every father should remember that one day his son will follow his example, not his advice.”
It’s your duty to show your children how they should live, not just tell them. They notice when you tell them one thing and do another. Actions speak louder than words. If you want your children to grow up to be good people, you have to be a good person yourself.
We can see the damage failed and absent fathers have had on our society.
So how do we fix it?
Changing the world for the better starts in the home.
Men need to be present fathers. They need to be engaged with their children and spend time with their kids.
Are you giving your children the best version of you? Or do they see the dad that’s always too tired for them after work?
Would you rather drink beer and watch sports than play games with them?
Are you wasting time watching porn rather than showing your children how to be a loyal and devoted husband?
Do you think your duty to your family ends with providing a paycheck? Or are you leading and shepherding your family?
Are you showing your sons how to be good strong, masculine men and your daughters what to look for in a man? Or are you indirectly showing them what a bad husband and father is?
We have no greater responsibility than to be good fathers. Nothing in our lives should be more important than raising our children.
Men, we must ensure that we are being the best fathers we can be. No father is perfect. We’ve all made mistakes. But we must strive to be the fathers our children need.
We are failing as men if we are failing as fathers.
Zac Small, aka Hunter Drew, wrote:
“You can be a good man without being a father, but you will never be a good father if you are not good at being a man.”
Are there changes in your life that you need to make to ensure you’re a good man and a good father?
Do you need to lose weight and gain strength to teach your kids how to be healthy?
Do you need to quit watching porn so you can teach them the dangers of addiction?
Do you need to rearrange your schedule so that you have more time for your children?
Do you need to teach them the lessons you’ve learned in life that the schools never will?
You may not have had a great father to learn from. But just because you didn’t have a good father, doesn’t mean you can’t be a good father. Now is the time to change the legacy.
Men, let us challenge ourselves to be the best fathers we can be. Let us challenge ourselves to live out the Biblical principles of fatherhood. Let us challenge ourselves to instill in our children the values that we hold dear so that they can pass them on to their children.
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