I was never prepared to be a dad let alone a dad of two daughters. I mean I was a boy so when we had our son I kind of had that one figured out. But daughters really, two of them, I was really deep in the weeds. So I wanted to be able to share with you some of the things that I have learned being the dad of two daughters that have grown up to be amazing women. So here you go:
- Listen to your wife! I had to listen to my wife a lot because I am the oldest of four and my sister was ten years younger then me. So I was clueless to a lot of areas when it came to what girls didn’t need or did need from a dad.
- Hug them always. One of the things that I always have done is hug my girls. I hugged my girls even when they didn’t want me too. Yep I went against the first one but that was only because I wanted my girls to know that I was going to love them and care for them whether they wanted me to or not.
- Be Honest with them. Now if you are a dad to a girl then you know the dreaded questions that start like this, “Dad what do you think about . . . ” insert hair, dress, make up, and a long list of others. Unfortunately when we first started with these questions I was to honest and I did not set up my answer. So I had a lot of looks from my wife and coaching with, “You don’t say that to a girl”. To which I would answer, “Well then why did she ask me?” So I would preface my answer by saying, “Do you want me to be honest?” Now I said that when I didn’t like what I saw and I have said that when I did like what I saw. (Be consistent)
- Set the Tone. If you want your daughter to have a man that is going to love and care for her, then you need to set the tone. So that is where you as the dad need to model exactly the kind of man that you want your daughters to look for in their life. In fact I think that you should set the bar so high that your girls will go out on dates with the young men in their life and expect them to act like you. And when the young men don’t act like you make sure you teach those same girls to not except it. So if you haven’t got what I am saying, then here you go. Love your wife the way that you want your daughters to be loved.
- Prepare them for Life. I know that you are probably thinking, well that is a big statement and you are right it is. But I believe that it is something that is very important. So prepare them to handle their finances, prepare them to take care of their car, prepare them to defend themselves if needed, prepare them to speak up, prepare them to trust, and prepare them to leave home well. I don’t expect my daughters to have to have a man to take care of them, I know that they can do it. But I also want to prepare them for a life with another, so prepare them to talk with a man, prepare them to love someone, prepare them to sacrifice for someone, you see prepare them for life.
There are just a few of the things that I would say are important when it comes to being a dad to daughters. But here is the last one and the most important prepare them to say, “I am sorry.” How do you do this? Learn to say it yourself. If there are some others that you can think of then feel free to comment and share them.
I know that in many places that leadership and leadership development can be an area of conflict. I know that especially when it comes to the church people can really get touchy about it. But over the last 4 years as we have been starting a church I have learned that if you don’t feed the leader then things go bad quickly. Especially when you are the one that everyone expects to be the leader. So I am really challenging myself to be a leader that is focused on feeding myself when it comes to becoming a better leader.
“Everyone wins when a leader gets better.” Bill Hybels
I want to be a leader that is getting better so that people around me are getting better. So there are some things that I am doing intentionally to get better:
- Reading the bible from the perspective of how will this make me better as a husband, father, and leader.
- Listening to leaders from different areas of leadership. Business, art, marketing so that I can start to think as a leader differently.
- Reading books that influence my ability to grow others around me. I recently read the book “Protégé” by Steve Saccone and it rocked my world.
- Meeting with leaders that are better then me and that are steps ahead of me when it comes to being a better husband, father, and church leader.
What I want to remind you is that, “Everyone is a leader somewhere”. So what are you doing to feed yourself to be a better leader? Because everyone wins when a leader gets better!
As you read this I will be in our truck driving my son up to his first year of college and college football. It is has been an interesting week for both Michelle and I as we send number two off to school. But I have to be honest I am so proud of Tyler and his dedication and drive. As he seeks to make his dreams come true to play college and then eventually professional football.
Ever since the days of Pop Warner Football in AZ, then high school football that got him going in Benicia, CA, to the great team and coaching staff at Rangeview in Aurora. They all prepared him for this day. As he has dreamt of playing football.
Here are some things that I want to encourage other younger dads to think about when it comes to encouraging your kids to dream.
- Encourage them to hear from God about their dreams and goals.
- Let them dream while they are young. (Don’t beat big dreams out of them because you didn’t get your chance.)
- When it comes time encourage them to evaluate dreams and goals. (5’2″ and wants to be the outside hitter for volleyball in the Olympics, for my daughter Dani.)
- Enable them to see the dreams and possibilities else where if things change.
- Be their biggest Fan but don’t be the obnoxious parent thinking of a signing bonus. (I coach high school football and there are those parents.)
- Help them to be disciplined if they want to dream big. (Going to bed on time, doing homework, and actually working out not walking around talking in the gym.)
- Turn them loose.
By the way UNC starts this years season playing against Utah on ESPN. I dream that Tyler will be on that field at some point and time in the game. Tyler I am proud of you and I know that you are going to rock the house!
What are some things that I missed and that you would add to the list? Make a comment below.
So for the leaders of church teams there are a couple of things we should always keep in mind. Our main goal is to prepare the team to be ready to get in the game. It is the goal of parents, small group leaders, class teachers, and the staff of the church to work together to prepare the team for the game. We are to be the ones that coach with a willing heart for the benefit of the team not for our benefit. So the question that I have is; “What are you doing to prepare your team to do to get in the game?” How are you as the coach ensuring that your team is ready for the game?
I love books and I have to say that I am a Barnes and Nobles junkie. I am an addict! Hi my name is Scott and it has been two weeks since I have bought my last book. But this summer I found an author that I would highly recommend. His name is Jon Gordon I have read three books of his that I feel are quite encouraging the titles of these books are “The Energy Bus,” “The No Complaining Rule,” and “Training Camp”. Jon Gordon has put together three books that should be read by parents, teachers, leader, and pastors. They are all in story form and they all teach about areas of life that we need to develop and improve not only our relationships but ourselves. Both my wife and daughter Danielle are reading or have read some of these books and have been greatly challenged by them.
I would like to really encourage people to share the book “Training Camp” with the men in their lives. It is a great story about a football player and his quest to become great at what he is doing in life. But during this quest he is challenged and eventually enters into a relationship with a much wiser and older man that mentors him. I believe that this story is one that will enable each man to become more then he is today and enable him to grow in areas of his life that will not just make him better but his wife, his kids, and those that are around him.
Each and everyone of us needs to go to “Training Camp”!