The Many Hats Of A Father
I am not my father.
This is the voice crying out when a child decides for themselves that they are not going to repeat the same mistakes that their parents have made.
There is no such thing as the perfect father. We are not perfect ourselves either. The point of this article is not to lambaste fathers but rather, to recognize and highlight the gaps between normal, nurturing fathers and those who are reluctant, absent, irresponsible and abusive.
My father is not a bad father. He is just an unfortunate example of being a father in name but never had the opportunity to fully act the part due to his failed business and subsequent medical deterioration. There are lessons to learn here from my father’s experience.
A father’s role is not an easy one. It is momentous and many-sided. We must understand the many hats a father wears and learn how to wear them.
1) The Leader In The House
A father is the head of the household.
He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect.
The lack of a prominent father figure in a child’s life has been shown to correlate with developmental issues in areas like conduct, character and achievement according to this study. Those who work with troubled teens have discovered that a common contributing factor is the lack of a father figure in their homes.
To properly manage a household, a father needs to oversee nearly everything and take charge with wisdom.
He prayerfully considers the feelings of others and his decisions are for their good rather than his own.
He recognizes his wife’s abilities and encourages her to develop them and use them to their fullest extent.
He is assured that he is in charge, that he has final responsibility for the smooth operation of the household, and that he will faithfully discharge that responsibility, and brings a great sense of security both to the wife and to the children.
2) The Lover To The Spouse
Besides fulfilling his role as a father, a man also needs to be a good husband and love his wife with an unselfish, forgiving love.
In the bible, Paul exhorted husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the church.
Husband and wife should continue to enjoy a special closeness in their relationship even when children come along
Simply put, the wife should come before you, before your boss, before your friends, before your work, even before your children.
3) The Son To The Parent
Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.
Every father is also a child to his own parents. How the father treats his parents will set an example for the way his child treats him.
Our parents have supported, loved and cared for us. Though there may be times we get irritated or mad at them, deep down we know that they are the only ones who will always unconditionally love and nurture us. In return, we need to do the same and make sacrifices for them too. It is only right that we remain grateful to them.
We are often so busy growing up, we forget that our parents are growing old.
Take care of them, mentally and physically. And cherish the time together.
4) The Educator To The Child
And fathers, do not provoke your children to anger; but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
Fathers need to contribute significantly to the entire process of nurturing a child.
Fathers should guide the child to discern between right and wrong and encourage them to do their best. See that his children make good choices and learn the basic lessons of life.
Father should remind the child of the consequences of their actions and positively acknowledge desirable behavior.
Father who disciplines in a calm and fair manner shows love for his children.
Fathers who guide their children with an iron fist, using force and fear, will not nurture a positive, loving personality in their children. This will cause problems to arise and is not the proper image a father should portray. It may produce an angry rebel who lashes out against society, or a guilt-ridden misfit who feels unworthy and rejected
Father, who provides reasonable, firm guidance, without arbitrarily imposing their will, helps to promote competence in children.
5) The Companion To The Family
By being a companion, it means comrade, confidant, and friend.
In today’s context, many fathers are so tied up with work and other commitments that they tend to be alienated from their children.
To establish a healthy, close relationship between father and children, it will require time spent together with open communication and intimate communion.
Many fathers work day and night, and consequently almost never see their families.
More than just being a lover to the spouse and an educator to the child, father should be there for the family, be a listening ear, be a shoulder for them to lean on.
6) The Producer In The Marketplace
But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
Father should work and provide for the family.
When a father does not work and provides for his family, he feels a sense of shame. His self-worth sinks. A father who does not work, who cannot keep a job, who moves from job to job, or who refuses to assume his responsibility creates insecurity in his wife and children.
And more than just that, a father should be diligent and excel in the tasks he is supposed to do.
7) The Steward In The Finance
Father should be responsible in managing the finances of himself and the household.
The importance of good family financial planning cannot be overstated.
Many money-related stresses are likely due to poor budgeting, lack of financial planning and discipline. Strained family relationships could arise as a result of this.
Here are examples of questions that a sound family financial plan can answer:
Am I adequately protected against medical emergency or unforeseen circumstances that affect my livelihood?
How much do I need for the children’s future education and my retirement?
How much do I need to set aside every month in order to meet my financial goals?
The more knowledgeable that you are of your finances, the probability of making sound and informed decisions throughout your life is higher and can lead you and your family closer to your family financial goals.
To all the children. Be thankful and appreciative of your father.
To all the fathers. May we be an example and a role model to our children in this fatherless generation.
Happy Father’s Day!