Summary: How fathers can build a firm foundation of character and positive relationships for their children?

Father’s Day

“A Father’s Firm Foundation”

How do fathers build a firm foundation of character and positive relationships for their children?

1. Loving Kindness

“... a gentle tongue can break a bone”

(Proverbs 25:15)

In other words dads – there is great strength in gentleness.

Do you show the same courtesy towards your kids that you expect from them?

Can you praise your kids without adding anything negative – like, “Great job with the dishes tonight – pity your room’s such a mess”?

How about your discipline – is it firm AND loving – or just firm? Do you discipline your children in front of others?

Do you hug your kids regularly (If you don’t they will find someone who will!!)

Are you quick to go to their aid when there’s a genuine need?

Dad’s, your words and acts of loving-kindness today will build confidence in your sons and daughters. They will have the confidence to attempt anything if they know your love, acceptance and gentle protection of them is assured no matter what.

2. Laughter

Dad’s when was the last time you laughed with your children - instead of at them?

There was a man all alone; he had neither son nor brother. There was no end to his toil, yet his eyes were not content with his wealth. "For whom am I toiling," he asked, "and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?" This too is meaningless-- a miserable business! (Ecclesiastes 4:8)

Dad’s if you’re always work, always discipline, always orders, always serious – then your kids are missing something very important. And you may well be missing the enjoyment of watching your kids grow up – and so you may end up a very lonely man.

Playtime is a big part of being a child and unless you can get into it dad’s, you’re cut right out of a huge part of your child’s life. Play sport with them. Discover which leisure things you like to do together and get into it.

3. Learning

Dad’s it’s no secret that most teachers – at least at Primary school level – are women. And for the most part I’m sure they’re doing a fantastic job. But even our Education Department recognises that more men are needed as teachers in our primary schools. What does this tell us? It tells us that it’s best for children to get a balanced learning input from both mum and dad. (It’s not always possible – but it’s best).

And the single most important lesson a father can teach his child – is why they are alive. Listen to these words from Ephesians 6:4 .....

Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4).

A father that teaches his child to follow the Lord will save them from living the frustration of a wasted life.

Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it (Proverbs 22:6).

Dad, you and your wife can teach your kids how things should would work - - or you can abdicate your responsibility and let your kids learn about life from their friends, the TV/internet and schools (That’s a frightening thought).

4. Listening

My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry (James 1:19)

When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise (Proverbs 10:19).

So often dads just want to be dispensers of information. But if that’s all communication is for you dad, then you have some extremely needy children. Especially if you have daughters, but I suspect sons are not much different in this department. Communication is about building a relationship – not just spewing out information.

And dad’s if you won’t listen to your sons or daughters, then they will keep searching until they find someone who will! Wouldn’t you much rather be that person?


It’s a tough job being a dad (or a mum for that matter). But you don’t have to do it on your own ...

For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. (2 Chronicles 16:9a)

If you are his - - then he is yours! Don’t complain that God is absent and not concerned about your life and plight as a Dad if you have never given him the time of day. Dad, if you are his, then he is yours - and he desires to make you the dad he created you to be.

To the fatherless/husbandless; To the emotionally abandoned; To those dads without a good fatherly example to follow, the Lord is ....

A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families

(Psalm 68:5-6)

Outline from Michael Farris, "What a Daughter Needs From Her Dad" (2004).

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