Sunday, June 15, 2014
All of us dads are in some way flailing and failing...
Well, I know some pretty great dads, and I'm not one. I'm just not. I'm learning. I have improved in some areas, but keep finding weak spots as my children grow and challenge me with new behaviors or issues.
I love my children massively. But I screw up with them plenty. I regularly pray my children won't be too messed up because of my many foibles. My wife helps me and covers for me a ton. I wish I knew what I know now, back when we had our first child. I think I could do better with the knowledge I have fifteen years in, Right? Maybe I'm dreaming.
So what hope is there for fathers like me? Well, honestly, I need other fathers. I need other brothers hacking away at fatherhood along side me, and I need my children to see it. Hopefully my children will understand how hard parenting is when they see a bunch of us doing it the best we can..which isn't very good a lot of the time. Hopefully we're all honest about our sin and shortcomings with our children. Hopefully we're quick to repent and run to Jesus. Hopefully, when my children's view of a professing Christian man is messed up because of me…they look elsewhere in the church and see more consistent models. Maybe, once and a while, I can provide that for someone else's kid.
I'm not making excuses for not doing better. I am just saying that I don't know too many guys who could be faithful, effective fathers in a vacuum. Fatherhood in community with others is a big part of my hope for my own sons as they become fathers some day. My Dad was a good father, but he's not the only model of fatherhood I had, thank God. All of us dads are in some way flailing and failing, but as a team, maybe we can cobble together a picture of fatherhood that nurtures our children. Maybe, such a transparent collective effort will be used by God to make the only perfect, loving, faithful, gracious Father there is, be all the more attractive.