I played quarterback in high school. Our best pass play was a draw if that gives you any indication as to what kind of a passer I was. Unfortunately, I never really learned to throw well until after I graduated.
I was good at managing the game though. I focused on the basics, made few mistakes and carried out my assignments. After one particular game, I was given the award for outstanding offensive player of the game and I don’t remember throwing a single pass. I was just good at playing to my strengths.
When it comes to being a dad, there are some things I’m good at and others, like being able to throw deep, I’m not so good at, so I’ve chosen to play to my strengths. For example, I’ve never had success leading family devotions. It’s just never seemed (past tense, because I rarely do it any more) to go well. Pulling out the Bible at the dinner table was a sure fire way to bring on complete and total frustration, for me and everyone involved. Not exactly the feeling I was wanting.
There a couple things I’ve tried to do well over the years, although I often fall short at both of them as well. The first is my relationship with the Lord. If I’m genuinely connected to God, like Jesus talked about in John 15, I believe my kids will enjoy the fruit of that relationship.
I will be more able to love them with the love of Christ, to impart His wisdom as we go about life together, to saturate them with grace, to simply model what it means to walk with God. Apart from Jesus, I cannot do any of those things, so my relationship with Him is vital.
A second area I focus on is my marriage. I want my children to see a marriage that’s becoming all God intended. I want them to see that even after twenty-three years, we’re still passionately in love and having fun with each other. I want them to see a marriage that’s making a difference in God’s kingdom.
My hope is that once my children have left home (one already has), they will have a solid understanding of what an authentic relationship with God and a love-filled marriage are all about.
How about you? What are your strengths as a dad and how can you maximize them? There’s nothing wrong with working on your weaknesses, but don’t let that stop you from playing to your strengths, from being the dad God uniquely designed you to be.
SOUND OFF: As a dad, what’s just one thing you’re doing well?