The Fruit of (Good) Fatherhood
An Extract from Gregory Winston Slayton website
Good fatherhood is a cornerstone of any happy family, and happy families are the cornerstone of our civilization. Fatherhood failure makes children (when grown) much more likely to be convicted of a felony, commit suicide, suffer from severe mental illness, drop out of high school, become a drug addict, etc. Children whose grandfathers and even great-grandfathers were men of commitment, competence and character (i.e., good fathers) are more likely to succeed.
So how can we become better fathers, better husbands and, yes, better men? I believe every dad needs three essentials on this journey:
A good map. I call this map a Noble Family Vision. It’s a vision of where we want our families to be in 10, 20 and even 30 years—and how we, as the leaders of our families, will help them get there. It’s something we need to share with our wives and children, to get their suggestions, input and buy-in.
Reliable tools. Here are the first six tools which spell out “FATHER”.
- The F Tool is for “Family First/Family Fun,” It helps us prioritize our family and have fun with them.
- The A is for “All-in Marriage,” Aa strong marriage is the best gift you can give your children.
- The T Tool is for “True Moral Compass,” because passing it on is more important than any financial inheritance they may get.
- The H is for “Heaven’s Help,” because we all need our heavenly Father help to be the father.
- The E tool is for “Empowering Servant Leadership,” because you’re called to be the servant leader of your family.
- The R tool is for “Relationship Tools That Work,” because virtually all of us could improve our relationships with our wife and children.
A few good allies. When times get tough, we’ll need people to stand by us. Your first and most important ally is the mother of your children. But you need other allies too—men who can hold you accountable and help you get back up when you stumble (because we all stumble).
Yes, the fatherhood journey is the journey of a lifetime. It’s filled with (many) ups and (at least a few) downs. But it’s the most important journey any dad can ever take. For on it, we not only grow to be better fathers and better husbands.