I am convinced that all dads want to make a strategic difference in the lives of their kids. With that in mind, many automatically aspire to make a “materialistic” difference with money and things. And, temporarily their kids will enjoy those “things” until they get tired of them and want “more things!”
Most children will never call out to their dads and say what they really need and want is love, time, and a positive role model. Let’s take a look at each of these:
- Kids need to be around “real men who love Jesus!” Your behavior needs to match what you say about Jesus.
- Children need to actually hear the words, “I love you” from their dads (at least once every day!).
- Kids need appropriate touch from their dads … hugs, shoulder touches, back rubs, wrestling in the floor!
- Place times on your calendar to be “with” your kids.
- Be relaxed when spending time with your kids. Make sure your child is at the center of your undivided attention.
- Schedule “daddy dates.” Let your child have input on where to go, where to eat (individually without other brothers and sisters!)
POSITIVE ROLE MODELS –
- Make sure your “walk” matches your “talk” in all aspects of life.
- Volunteer to serve in your kids’ areas of ministry at church … this can include teaching, chaperoning, construction, and many other areas. This communicates to your kids.
- Never discipline in anger. Make sure your emotions are under control when re-directing your child’s behavior.
Pray over this list and let the Lord lead you to needed areas of improvement. Share this list with the dads in your ministry.
Jerry Vogel is an Editorial Ministry Specialist in Lifeway Kids. He is a graduate of Dallas Baptist University and has served over 40 years in Kids Ministry at the local church level as well as at Lifeway. Jerry currently teaches four-year-olds at his church.