I have been so blessed to have a great dad who has made my life so rich. Nat Cloer grew up in the mountains of North Carolina and Georgia. He worked with his hands as a lumberman and electrician. He is amazingly mechanical from that background. He can fix anything. He has been my mom’s husband for fifty four years. He loves Jesus and has followed him since he was a young teen. My dad had a huge impact on me and still does.
Fathers have great power. I have four suggestions for fathers on Father’s Day.
- Never underestimate prayer. Pray for your children through every phase of their life. God answers prayer. Several years ago, one of the teens in our ministry became unusually defiant to his parents. He wanted to have nothing to do with them. He closed his heart off to them and rejected them in many ways. I met with him on several occasions to see if I could open his heart to them. We made some progress but the relationship was incredibly distant as he went to college. A few years have passed and that young man just recently called his mom to express his remorse and ask forgiveness. The parents prayed for their son and never lost hope.
- Encourage your children. Growing up is hard. Some of the most challenging days of my life were spent in school trying to grow up. A father has the power of life and death in his tongue. He can crush the will and spirit of a child with words that demean and despise. He can also lift and love a child with words that instruct and inspire. For every discouraging word, try to give 7 encouraging words.
- Hug your children. Children need to have affection from their father. It comforts a daughter and consoles a son. The touch of a Father’s hand in love makes any day better. Teenagers especially need the affection of a dad even though it may seem like you are hugging a cactus. Acceptance, love, concern, and grace is communicated when you hug your child.
- Speak up to your children instead of down to them. The Lord called Gideon a Mighty man of valor while he was threshing wheat in a wine press. He was hiding from the Midianites and God still called him courageous. God spoke up to him. He spoke to him where he could be and should be instead of simply where he was. Bless your child and speak to your child with hope and faith. Fathers need to speak to their children with the full expectation that they will grow up and be mature, wise adults.
Happy Father’s Day