If you are blessed to be a Dad, you’ve been given a priceless gift in this life. The gift of pointing your children to him. The gift of leading. The gift of loving. Your actions matter, how you choose to live makes a difference in the lives of all you know.
We see from research through the years, that kids generally do better socially, academically, and emotionally, when dads are actively involved and participating in their lives. But it’s not just the fact that fathers are physically present that matters, it’s how they are present. Kids thrive most when dads recognize the need to provide a warm, understanding relationship under which their children can share life, learn, and grow.
Words matter. Our kids need to hear them. They thrive under encouraging, supporting, heart-felt words. And young children grow up into adults and yet they still need to hear, loving words from a father’s voice. Wisdom from a daddy’s heart, that lives on long in the lives of others.
Here are 12 things every dad should say to his kids, though there’s many more:
1. I love you. Period. No matter what. Unconditionally. And nothing will ever change that.
2. I believe in you. You can do it. Anything is possible. You are a winner.
3. Love God. Love your spouse.
4. I am with you. And even when you can’t see me, you can be assured I’m thinking of you.
5. I am proud of you. You are beautiful. You are amazing. You have great purpose in this world.
6. Respect yourself. Respect others. Respect your Mom.
7. Your character is always more significant than your reputation. Never forget who you are and that you first belong to God. Who you are in secret is just as important as who you are in public, because God sees both.
8. I am sorry. Would you please forgive me? I forgive you.
9. I am praying for you. You have my blessing in all that God calls you to do in this life.
10. Work hard. Save some. Spend a little. Give a lot.
11. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Laugh. Have fun in life. Every day is an adventure.
12. Be brave. Be strong. But always remember that it’s OK to be afraid. And it’s OK to cry.
Whether or not you ever heard these words from you own Dad is not the end of the story. Because God is both the beginning and the end of your story, and He speaks love over you today.
Dads, you are powerful in the lives of your kids. You are hero status. You are a solid foundation. You hold the potential for great influence in the generations to come.
Live wisely. Live well. Live strong. Live with grace. Your Father God is with you, always.
“…but as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15).
“He who fears the LORD has a secure fortress, and for his children it will be a refuge” (Proverbs 14:26).
Debbie McDaniel is a pastor’s wife, mom to three amazing kids and a few too many pets, dramatist and writer. She has a heart to communicate God’s hope though the everyday moments of life – the good, the bad, the ugly, and the ones that take your breath away. A lover of every sunrise, forever needy of His grace, this Texas girl finds joy in the simple gift of each new day. Debbie invites you to join her at www.freshdayahead.com, and Facebook and Twitter.