I was asked a question by my oldest son just the other day. A question that actually brought a tear to my eye when I looked at it from his prospective. So today, I ask you the same question. “Dad, how are we as kids supposed to look up and follow by example when the examples that we are asked to follow cuss, smoke, dip and talk about other people when they are not around?” Yeah, feel the 2×4 that just hit you in the forehead?
What kind of example are you being to your kids? Your kids are like a sponge that is soaking up every bit of knowledge and mistake that we as dads, or parents for that matter, make. When you walk around the house burping loudly and the kids all giggle, do you fuss at them when they do it in a restaurant? When you are working outside and cut your hand, what is the first thing that comes out of your mouth? Because when you kid gets hurt somewhere and uses that same word, are you going to be embarrassed? Or the best example is when you are talking about somebody in the neighborhood, work or at church and your kids repeat the very same thing in their presence. Do you fuss at them? Many times we do these things and then get angry or upset at our kids for simply doing what we do. Of course we tell them that we were discussing adult things or using adult words. But let me ask you, if they are adult discussions, why are they being held around the kids? And when was it ok for adults to use words and kids not? If the word is not appropriate to say to your grandmamma, you don’t need to be saying to anyone!
What kind of example are you letting your kids be around? This is something that crosses all boundaries and arenas. From school, sporting events, homeschool programs and even church. There are times that our kids will be in the presence of someone that we as the parent feel is not the right example or role model for our kids. Dad, that is where we need to step up to the plate and become engaged in our kids life instead of watching from the bleachers. Don’t sit in the stands watching your kid practice every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday while you text, call and have “your life as a sports parent”. Get involved with your kids. Many times we just pass our kids off to the next person in line assuming that they will be taught what they need to know without the leader doing, saying or showing anything wrong. I have been a T-ball coach, soccer coach, AWANA Commander, T&T Leader, and have made it to brown belt status in GoJu Ryu karate with my kids. Have I been tired? Ohhh yeah! But I have been there with my kids. Not dominating the scene, but being part of the scene. I was not the head coach every time. I was not always in charge of the AWANA program or class. I am a student, like them, in karate. And there is nothing that could be given to me that would make me want to have traded the years of being with my kids.
Lastly, are you showing them the example that Jesus left us? Are you reading your Bible with your family? Are you taking them to church or having a worship time with them at home? Are you leading them spiritually? Are you, dad, the shepherd of your flock? Or are you the big sheep wandering in front of them? When I ask myself those questions, I can’t say yes and I don’t measure up all the time. But dad, we can not give up and let someone else raise our kids. That is our job! A job that I hold above all other jobs that I will ever have. The job of dad!
Till next time…
I’m just a Husband of a Homeschooling Mom