I’m a dad and I need to die. In fact, I think all fathers should die. We’d all be better off for it.
I don’t mean that we should all literally die, of course. But in a sense, good fathers kill themselves.
I’m not getting any clearer, am I?
How about this: My selfishness needs to die.
In any relationship, there is a constant battle of what-I-want VS. what-you-want. That kid (hopefully not mine) throwing a tantrum in the toy aisle? Selfishness. He wants the toy, you want your dignity.
The problem is that while our tantrums (hopefully) decrease as we grow older, the root of the tantrum often hangs around much longer. To be a great dad, I need to kill this root of selfishness.
Break out the Roundup.
I’m not merely talking about sharing your ice cream with your little one. That’s easy and mostly inconsequential. It’s exceedingly more difficult to be selfless with our time.
Is your hobby killing your family?
A tremendous young pastor, Josh Lindstrom, spoke some wise words for dads. Between his job and his family, he doesn’t have time for hobbies. Truthfully, I don’t either. Do you?
Do you have kids at home but play golf every weekend? Why? Shouldn’t your family be your hobby?
If I took the time for hobbies, something would suffer. But it wouldn’t be my work duties. Family often gets the short end of the stick.
I love to go mountain biking with my friend. But when I go, half of my Saturday is gone – prime time to chill with the family.
So you’re saying I can’t ever have any fun?
Nope. But I have three suggestions for dads:
1. Consider changing your idea of “fun”. Sure (insert activity) is fun, but find something you can do with your family. Spending time hiking or just being outside together has been great for my family. Find what works for yours.
2. “I’ve earned the right to ____________.” Get over yourself. You have a family. Therefore, you have earned the right to lead them courageously. One of the greatest ways you can do that is to…
3. …be intentional with your time. I don’t know about your home, but with my kids, the days are often long but the years are way too short. Spend time doing things that matter with people that matter.
And who matters more than those little people who buy you ties every June?
February 24th, 2013 at 6:18 AM
What a beautiful post. We spend so much time trying to be “productive” or achieve things, that our family life often suffers. I guess one-upon-a-time raising kids and having a job was enough, now it seems you need to be so many things to lead a worthwhile life that we don’t leave enough space for what’s really important. I hope there are more dads in the world with this attitude in future! Thanks for sharing it.