You are your daughter’s first love. She will grow up to know how a man should treat her by the way you treat her mother as well as how you value her role in your life. She looks forward to showering you with love, sharing the advice you give her to her friends and talking about you with those friends in a positive light. You are her best friend and her biggest hero!
Nevertheless, if you relinquish your parental responsibilities, she will grow up not knowing what to look for in a man. She may end up going from one relationship to another looking to fill that void you left behind. That is how many of our young ladies become baby-mothers for various men, never seeing themselves as good enough to be someone’s wife.
Your daughter needs you to instil confidence in her so she can know her worth. She needs you in her life to tell her that she’s beautiful and that you love her. She needs to know that you will do what it takes to ensure her safety and security and to help her achieve her goals in life.
When she’s of age she wants to know that you will be there to dry the tears and comfort her when her heart is broken. She dreams about the day when you’ll walk her down the aisle, placing her hands into the hands of a man whose character has been tried and tested, one you know will care for her and continue to make her feel special.
Time spent with a child = LOVE.
Time spent with a child = LOVE.
BEING AN EFFECTIVE FATHER-IN-LAW
BEING A FATHER TO ADULT CHILDREN
The cycle of life continues after you have successfully done all that you can as parents before they start their own journey into parenting. You can breathe! Thank God for helping you get through those challenging years but don’t think that your duties as a parent is now complete.
Your children then need to know that you and their mother will be there to help them and their spouses navigate their way through marriage and parenting [being there when they need you and being actively involved in their children’s lives] passing on your wisdom to the next generation.
This is where the lessons you have taught them, while they were growing up, will make sense in many areas of their lives. As they apply those lessons to life it becomes a blessing for you to witness the fruit of your labour. You’ll then be grateful that you took the time to train them up in the way they should go. Unfortunately, if you have neglected that part you will have a constant battle of trying to foster a great relationship with your adult children and their offspring.
“Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from Him. Children born to a young man are like sharp arrows in a warrior’s hands. How happy is the man whose quiver is full of them! He will not be put to shame when he confronts his accusers at the city gates” (Psalm 127:3-5).
I am hurt when absent fathers speak ill of mothers who are holding the fort and often picking up the shattered pieces because fathers have either checked out emotionally or physically. It is often the root of the child’s anger and disrespect. Hence, I encourage men to get involved in the lives of their children.
I am pleading with you fathers to not just provide food, clothing and shelter but to be there to help with the training process. There are some things a mother simply cannot teach her children. Mothers are not equipped to do what fathers are designed to do. And some things can only be taught through your example. Your role is vital in the life of your children.
Masculinity comes from Dad. Structure comes from Dad. Discipline and security comes from Dad. A boy grows up learning how to respect a lady from the way his father treats his mother. He learns how to be a father by watching his Dad. A father is not just raising up a son, he’s also raising up someone’s husband and someone’s father. His Dad is his first hero! You cannot be replaced by any other. No one else can do the job that you are called to do.
If you let him down, by not being in his life, he will grow up destroying his own life wanting to be nothing like you and often that vicious cycle continues into the next generation. That represents dishonour and you can do nothing about it then. It will take the grace of God to turn your adult child’s heart towards you when your heart was never turned towards him while he was growing up—when he needed you the most.