Great Dads Are Growing Dads
DECEMBER 22, 2012
Isn’t this as amazing as contemplating the vastness of the universe, that God wants to use you as a dad to influence these little people who will do who knows what as they live as adults on this planet! You don’t have to be perfect to be a great dad, just a growing one.
The great Apostle, Paul, put it this way:
14 I do not write these things to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. 15 For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel. 16 I urge you, then, be imitators of me. 17 That is why I sent you Timothy, my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, to remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach them everywhere in every church.
1 Corinthians 4:14-17 (ESV)
Paul was a great apostle, a great man, a great role model. He was great because Jesus spent a lot of time with him and did so much remodeling of him that about the only thing you recognized in Paul was his outward body. Jesus didn’t do much to renovate that. He still had an eye problem (most likely that was what his “thorn in the flesh” was), and tradition says Paul was definitely not an ancient candidate for GQ cover man of the year: short, bow legged, balding. Well, Jesus wasn’t trying to be a looker either (Isaiah 53:2).
Paul was a great man because Jesus made him into a great man. He knew he was still a sinner and not perfect (Romans 7; I John 3:2), but he had walked with the Lord for so long that he was now, at the point where he was writing the Corinthians, someone who could say, “Well, follow my example and you’ll know how to be a Christian.” “Imitate me”.
Every new Christian has to have a role model along with Jesus. Sure, ultimately we are to imitate God (Ephesians 5:1), but we need a skin and bones role model of what to become in front of us. Every child needs that too. Look, your kids will not be your clones. They have a related DNA but a unique DNA to them and their personality will not be your personality exactly. But they need to see how a Christian dad/man lives so they will know the boundaries and traits and characteristics of what it means to follow Jesus in real life.
Great dads aren’t perfect dads, they’re just growing dads.
Isn’t this as amazing as contemplating the vastness of the universe, that God wants to use you as a dad to influence these little people who will do who knows what as they live as adults on this planet! Your kids are your image but mostly they are made in God’s image and they will serve Him ultimately. And you get to help shape those lives.
Stunning. I have not gotten over that fact. We are privileged men to shape the lives of our kids.
This is what motivated me to growth as a young dad…I had a lot of maturing to do and I needed Jesus every day to do make changes so that I could love Caron and my kids well! I’d crack open the Bible before work and go to school…graduate school in character and daddying. Great dads aren’t perfect dads, they’re just growing dads. Dads that drink in God’s grace everyday. Dads who know they’re loved and seek to live loved and and then love well because they are loved. They know they are worth loving because Jesus says so, and that their kids are worth loving too.
A growing dad needs a Heavenly Father
A growing dad needs a Heavenly Father, and seeks to meet Him in the morning. Grab your holy cup of java, open The Book, and read some, asking, “Father, what are you saying to me today about me and how I can grow? Help me grow as a dad!” He will show you something. Read Proverbs…it takes 10 minutes to read a chapter of Proverbs a day, if that. Maybe 5.
Great dads are made, not born. Made by God every day, bit by bit. And in turn, growing dads produce great (not perfect) kids.
It seems a heavy thing to see that we need to model what we want our kids to become. Well, it’s a simple fact that they will imitate us no matter what. Might as well give them some good stuff to copy.
You don’t have to be perfect to be a great dad, just a growing one.
What do you think? Tell me about your imperfect, but growing dads!
You Take it to Heart,