On this special day, I've been mulling over some thoughts on fathers. So for what it's worth, here's what I've come up with for myself to pursue. May it encourage you as you consider the special Dads in your life. <3
5 Ways to Honour Your Kids' Dad This Father's Day:
What? What does this have to do with being a Dad? Well, in this age of child-centered families, we've taken the emphasis from the life-long marriage relationship to the temporary parent-child relationship. So wives, to make him a better father to your children, make that permanent relationship the priority - not only does it give your children an environment in which to thrive but it also requires giving up some of the energy you would otherwise expend on your children, to building up your marriage.
2. Speak Well of Him in Your Home
Children, both young and old, are SO perceptive. They pick up both on what you say and the attitude with which you express it. When Daddy isn't home (as we military wives know so well) speak well of him. When Ryder asks where Daddy is during the day, my standard answer is, "Daddy's working. Daddy works so hard to take care of us." From an early age, build that expectation for and appreciation of hard work. One of the first things that comes to mind when I think of my Dad was just how hard I saw him work, sometimes in terrible weather and not feeling great, yet he was committed to working his hardest to provide for our family. And when I talk to our children about him, I'll be sure to speak well of his work ethic too.
|With my Dad when I was in college.|
It may not be work, it may be some other character quality you choose, whatever it is, speak well of your children's Daddy in the home.
3. Speak Well of Him in Public
Not only do your children hear and perceive how you honour their father, your family and friends are sure to pick up on how you speak of your husband. Do you casually participate in 'husband bashing' with your girlfriends? Maybe laughing about how he botched some household task - like loading the dishwasher or getting the kids ready for something. It may seem harmless enough, but every instance of seemingly harmless belittling chips at that foundation of your relationship - that relationship that provides stability and an example for your children in their future relationships.
What I've said above only goes so far if you don't let him know personally, daily that you're proud of him and you love him. What does he love to do? Tell him he's great at it! Spend time learning about his hobbies from him. Join him if you can. Sometimes encouragement is hard to give. Sometimes you're just not feeling it. Sometimes you really have to dig deep to find something to commend. Words of affirmation go so far though. They give hope. They inspire. Pray for him. Pray with him. Let him know how proud you are of him as a Dad to your children.
Oooh, isn't this one hard? It can be so easy to undermine Dad's authority. Well, Dad said no screen time, but if you're good, I'll give you 10 minutes. It can be so easy (especially in the home after he's been gone for a long day of work) to think that he just doesn't understand that way you operate things (and maybe he doesn't). But talk to him about that, not your kids. It sounds crazy in our culture, but the biblical home is one in which Dad leads and Mom functions in her role as helper. Be on the same page in your parenting, weigh in and discuss your ideas and goals together, but ultimately, let him lead the family.
My two boys are blessed to have a wonderful God fearing Daddy who loves and nurtures them. On this Fathers Day, I couldn't be more thankful for the Father Braden is to our boys.
Happy Father's Day!