…This is one call you don’t want to miss!

hand holding a telephone receiverDo you remember the day you found out you were going to be a father?

I don’t remember much when I found out about our first son – I was probably too shocked and excited. But, I remember the experience with our second child. My wife and I were at the doctor’s office for an ultrasound and, for some reason, we brought our three-year-old son. As the ultrasound technician did her work, she exclaimed, “Look, you’re going to have a baby and be a big brother!” Our oldest quickly cried, “A baby? It’s supposed to be a puppy!”

For many of us in this stage of life, we don’t even feel ready to take care of a puppy, let alone a baby. Whether pregnancy is a long anticipated event or a complete surprise, it puts us in the thick of fatherhood – ready or not.

Answering the Call

But from God’s perspective, He has always been ready for you to be a father. It’s all part of his plan for you and part of his calling on your life.

I deliberately use the phrase “calling” because God’s hand is clearly at the core of you becoming a father. And God promises those who are called that he will equip them to fulfill this call.

The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.  I Thessalonians 5:24

He does not abandon us; He leads and guides us in all that we do. We simply have to step-up and take on what He has called us to do.

You may be asking, if I am called and equipped by God to be a dad; then why do I feel so unprepared and ill-equipped for dad duty? This is a common refrain from most dads. For me, I didn’t feel very prepared – I kept looking for the user’s manual to no avail. However, God sees it differently. From His perspective, you are ill-equiped to be a father on your own. But with God, He will equip you in your weakness as you turn to Him.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  II Corinthians 12:9

Read that again…so that Christ’s power may rest on me! How do you tap into His power to be a great dad and live out the call he has given you?

  1. Recognize your weakness and your need for God, and plug into his power. Ask him to pour out his Holy Spirit into your life and ask, “God help me to be a better dad!”
  2. Allow God to work. Be open to His leading and direction. This will take time, but because you have been called, He will be faithful to give you what you need to serve your family.

Tap Into God’s Power

Here are a few other “power tools” you can try as you tap into God’s power to be a better dad and live out his call:

  1. Prayer – Go to God daily and ask him for help. Be specific and diligent.
  2. Scripture – God’s Word serves as life’s instruction book. Through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, it can help us see God’s way to being a great dad.
  3. Your Wife – If you are married or the mother of your children is still in your life as a positive influence, go to her as a sounding board and as a person who God often uses to bring valuable guidance on caring for your children.
  4. The Church – Engage in a church that will bring life to your family and strengthen you as a father.
  5. Other Men – Be a part of a small group of men (we call them, Two-by-Fours) where you can mutually support one another as dads.
  6. Other Christians – There are a lot of great Christian ministries that you can tap into for wisdom and practical advice. Hopefully, The Fatherhood Project-Building Great Dads will serve you as one of those ministries.
  7. Faith – In the end, this is the key to your being equipped as a father. Your reliance on God is essential.

You have been called by God to be a father. This is the first of the foundational truths we use in The Fatherhood Project-Building Great Dads. Answer the call and with God’s help, be the great dad he has called you to be!