The Gift of Being a Father

There is nothing I enjoy more, other than being the husband to my lovely wife, Jean, than being the father to my daughter, Hannah. She’s three, and in a three year’s old mind reality hasn’t sunk in yet. Daddy is still cool, not embarrassing, and neat to be around. I’ll take it as long as I can get it!!! So when I prepare to go home from the office, or wherever it is God has taken me in my pastoral duties for the day, I say a little prayer.

“God, give me strength!”

Simply put. That’s all I ask. But it’s asking a lot. Because when I get home, I’m about to be slammed into by a three year old that is so full of energy and so excited that daddy is home, that there is no place for “too tired” or “need to rest for a minute”, or especially “not right now”. Those words do not exist!

The hours I have been away and have missed are now to be caught up in mere minutes. There are preschool color pages for me to see and enjoy. There’s the latest song to hear her sing and the dance that goes with it. There’s fake tea to be served and consumed, all before we even sit down at the dinner table.

“God, give me strength!”

And He does. This is the message that has continuously come to my mind when I pray that prayer before I go home.

“Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you…” (1 Tim. 4:14)

Now bible scholars, trust me, I know. I’m taking the verse out of context, but perhaps just a little, maybe as I sit here and think about it more, maybe not at all. Paul is clearly telling Timothy not to neglect the gift he has been given, the calling he has been given, to lead the church.

But every time I’ve been praying this prayer for God to give me strength, this is the verse that comes to mind, so I’m rolling with it! It is a gift to be a father. A little over three years ago God granted me such a gift. And I get the opportunity pretty much every night to come home and feel the joy of such a calling.

May I speak for all fathers when I say, “Lord, may we never neglect the gift you have given us to be fathers. May we never take it for granted. And may we remain humble, yet confident, as you lead us as our Father, in the leading of our children.”

So here I go, off to the house. God give me strength!