Archive for the ‘Work’ Category
I know a man personally who once heard outside his office door a strange low voice calling his full name and title and requesting an audience. Upon opening the door, he was surprised to see his son standing there. When he asked his son why he had lowered his voice and called him by his full name and title his son replied, “I thought maybe I’d have a better chance at getting to see you that way.”
Obviously, somehow, over time, this Dad had given his son the impression that his staff had easier access to him than his children! This Dad told me he canceled all his appointments and spent the rest of the day with his son. He asked him, “Son, what do you want to do today?” His son said, “I’d like to fly a kite.” And fly a kite they did! The next day this father received a drawing from his son of the two of them flying a kite. Oddly enough, the son drew the kite in the shape of a heart – though it had not been, and he wrote the following note to his father below the drawing. “Dad, I love you so much, I’d die for you.” You can imagine the impact of this experience on this busy father.
This is a true story. I have a scanned copy of the picture and you can see it yourself in the online video First Things First on Kidology.org. But the point is: Are you available to your kids? Can they reach you when they need you? Do they KNOW they are more important to you than anyone else in your life? It’s O.K. to be busy. Your children can understand that you are providing for the family, but they need to know that they can break through that busyness without annoying you when its important and they need you. This father radically changed his life after this experience with his son, even changing jobs to be more available to his son. Are your kids more important than your job? Of course. BUT DO THEY KNOW THAT?
Being a Dad is your highest calling, and there are just a few short years while they are in your home – and then YOU will be the one wanting them to be available to you.
“Show me, LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days;
Let me know how fleeting my life is.
You have made my days a mere hand-breadth;
the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath, even those who seem secure.”
God’s Word reminds us of how short our life truly is. And how fast it will go by, and how fast our kids are going to grow up, and how quickly we may be dealing with regret, if we don’t make time now to be available for our children. Don’t miss the opportunities you have NOW to be available for them.
Being available means that your kids know that they have direct access to you and that they can bypass anyone to get to you. Of course, there can be rules as to when they do this – but when it is important – they need to know, nothing is more important to you than them. They can contact you or interrupt anything when they need you. You are their Dad, and they are your Child. And you are Available to them 24/7. And that is something that will last a lifetime!
As dads we live pretty busy lives, don’t we? Between work, and home and work (it seems to overflow, doesn’t it?) there are more demands on us than it is humanly possible to manage. How can we possibly be a good dad?
Something has to give, right?
The answer is yes! The key is accepting that reality and choosing not to let it be your kid(s). In just a few short years, they won’t be around to demand your time. All too soon, you will be able to work those extra hours in a quiet empty house where noisy toys once irritated you. In fact, before you know it, you’ll be complaining that they are too busy for you!
That is why the Bible warns,
“Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity…”
God knows that all too often we end up with regrets. The passage where this verse is found isn’t talking about parenting, but the principle applies – while we are running around trying to keep up with everything, our kids are steadily getting older. Ask yourself, Seriously, how important are the things you are working on? What would really happen if you didn’t get all them done? How bad would the consequences truly be if you blew something off at work to spend more time with your kids?
When it comes to being an intentional dad, it’s all about saying “no” to the right things and being willing to say “yes” to your kid(s) instead. You have to say “no” to something, probably several things every day. Say no to the boss or some co-workers for a change. (!) You might just enjoy it! Then spend some extra time on the floor playing or laughing or playing some silly board game. Make a memory! Lose the clock and find the fun!