Our Father Isn’t

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Our Father Isn’t Passive and He Doesn’t Provoke Us

Happy Father’s Day! 

Thank you, fathers, for all that you do to lead your families, love your wives, and raise your children to serve God with a lasting faith!  There is literally no higher calling that we could aspire to.

On this special day, let’s remember how fortunate we are to have the Perfect Father.  He has been a Father for an eternity, and He fathers us perfectly.

If you’ve been a father very long you know that fathering is a hard job.  Some days we are too passive and don’t fight for their hearts.  Some days we are too harsh and we just provoke them.  Most of us tend towards one ditch or the other.  But our Father’s love is perfect, and He loves us just how we are!  He is kind and loving, and He is powerfully fighting for our hearts.  No matter what we have messed up He is right there, running out to meet us.  Whether we are the ungrateful prodigal son or the ungrateful judgmental son, this is true of Our Father’s love for us:

It chases me down, fights til I’m found, leave the 99.

I couldn’t earn it, I don’t deserve it, still you give Yourself away.

Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God.

There’s no shadow you won’t light up, mountain you won’t climb up, coming after me.

There’s no wall you won’t kick down, lie you won’t tear down, coming after me.

He loves us and He is aggressively coming after us to rescue us and reconcile with us.  He desires a relationship with us like the relationship He has with His Son, our Brother and Friend.  He is truly a good, good Father!

Do you ever feel like you have to do this on your own?  Like you have to be a man when deep down you feel like a boy?  Do you wonder if you have what it takes?  You can rest in the kind, assertive, powerful, love of Your Father.




When Tragedy Strikes

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In the life of a child, sometimes tragedy strikes.

It struck our home a few weeks ago when our oldest was unable to find her shoes for the first day of school after Christmas break.

What, is that less tragic than you were expecting?

Before you laugh at her, remember that many of your own ‘tragedies’ are of no greater importance.  I don’t know about you, but I almost lose my mind when I lose something that’s important to me. I can’t think of anything else. Even if the thing I’m looking for is not all that important, just the fact that I’ve lost it drives me crazy! I’m a 35-year-old man, so I have a different way of reacting to this frustration than a 10-year-old girl, but her reaction (tears ) is just as natural as mine is.

But we are called to be supernatural, aren’t we!

Continue Reading…

The Pitfalls of Parenting Praise

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We love our kids, and we believe that using words of encouragement over them is incredibly important.  We try to be involved parents, and because of this we give our kids a lot of praise.

But there is a pitfall to avoid on this parenting praise path.  Like a trap in the jungle, it is disguised to make it difficult to see.  Perhaps this exercise will help uncover it:

Fill in the blanks:

If I am a “winner” when I win, then when I lose, I am a _________. Continue Reading…

Learning How To Lose

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I hate to lose.

But I don’t usually cry when I lose.

(Well, rarely anyway.)

How do I teach my boy to hate losing but to still be able to handle a loss?   Continue Reading…

Strong Boys


Yesterday we had the pleasure of having 13 boys age 5-10 at our house.  They are the group we call “Strong Boys,” which is a part of the Children’s Ministry at our church.  A couple months ago the “Agape Girls” came over, and the boys thought that it was about time that they got their turn.  The agenda for a boys’ day is a little different.  We had hotdogs, played kickball, Frisbee golf, Bible-Trivia-Frisbee-Tic-Tac-Toe (yes, that’s a thing), and quarterback challenge.  We made superhero chalk drawings and ate ice cream with a bunch of toppings.  Good boy activities that tap into the natural masculine spirit of a boy.  We want to make our faith come alive in ways that are interesting for a boy, and this was a great chance to do that.   During the 2 teaching times, I shared with the boys two topics:

1)      God wants us to be strong.

2)      What to do when we don’t feel strong. 

Continue Reading…

Daddy’s Sweatshirts


For today’s post I am asking a question – what is it about my sweatshirts that my little girls like so much?

Two times in the last month I have had a smiling little girl make a simple request:  “Daddy, can I wear one of your sweatshirts?”

This is the kind of request that I am powerless to refuse, and I was more than happy to comply.  When I gave them my old sweatshirts to them you would have thought I had given them a brand new outfit!  We have posted before just how important a dad is to his daughters, and this was just one more reminder for me.  Dads – you play a special role in the life of your daughter.  Sometimes the little things will make a big difference, so be alert.

Girls – any advice for me here?  What is it about my sweatshirts that Hannah and Bekah love so much?

Here are a few more posts about the importance of dads to daughters:

Daddy-Daughter Dates

Daughters Need Fathers Like Fish Need Water

Dad Presence = Secure Presence

Don’t forget Dr. Meeker’s site!



The Fine Art of Child Delegation

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A few weeks back I wrote a nerdy post about the 4 roles of the preceptor parent.  (I was targeting the “pharmacist-parents-with-more-than-3-children” crowd, which is our niche market.)  I had also put it out there that a dad is a teacher.

Today’s follow-up is about the fine art of delegating to your children.  Why is it a fine art?

  • Fine art takes talent.
  • Fine art takes a lot of practice. And hard work.  And time.
  • Fine art is a beautiful masterpiece!
  • Creating fine art is a messy process.

I am a little concerned that our society is trending towards children who are have every opportunity but little or no experience with responsibility.  Some families have crammed in so many activities that they don’t have time to slow down and teach their kids life skills.  Skills like laundry.  Dishes.  Hammering a nail.  Mowing the grass. Planting a garden.  Cooking.  Cleaning the floor.  You know, all that stuff that YOU have to do for THEM.  Turns out that it is actually your job to teach THEM how to do those jobs for themselves!


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The Four Roles of the Preceptor Parent

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One really fun part of my job is being a preceptor for pharmacy students and pharmacy residents.  I was listening to a preceptor training course, learning how to become a better preceptor to these college students and recent graduates, when it struck me just how similar the role of the preceptor was to the role of a parent.  The goal of a preceptor is that the student will be able to perform independently as a pharmacist, and that same successful independence is the ultimate goal of every parent.  The class explained the 4 roles that the preceptor will play, and here is the adapted version that we can apply to our jobs as ‘preceptor parents.’


The first strategy that you use is instruction.  This is simply lecturing, giving information, talking.  This is an important, necessary step.  But if this is where you stop then you are limiting your influence drastically.  This just fills their heads with what they should do, but it doesn’t give them the chance to get involved.  This will be something that you do, a lot, especially when the kids are younger.  Parents who stop here will have children who say ‘He talked a lot’ or “He gave me a lot of wisdom.’  But if you stay here you will just be a sage or a lecturer.  I’m guessing that as my kids become teenagers they will be less influenced by plain old instruction than by the other 3 roles.  (So I’m trying to get this well-established before they get to that point!)  Continue Reading…

Little Pitchers Have Big Ears

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A couple days ago Dana and I were trying to decide whether to attend an upcoming Bible Study or stay home. We are usually faithful attenders, but we had just gotten back from out of town, and we had a lot to get ready before another trip. To seal the deal, we realized that we have 3 evenings planned in the next 2 weeks where we will be going out together and getting a babysitter for the kids. As I picked green beans in my glorious garden, with the kids running around in the yard and helping pick once in a while, Dana and I discussed how we didn’t want to have yet another night where we didn’t spend time with our kids. So, we weighed our options and decided to skip the Bible study this one time. Dana went back into the house and I didn’t think too much of it. But then a minute or two later, Hannah came up and said, “Daddy, I’m glad that you guys think about us, instead of just deciding what to do.” I asked her what she meant, and she said, “You didn’t just decide to go to the Bible Study – you knew that we need you to be with us.” I didn’t know that she was listening…let alone comprehending what our discussion was about. You would think I would know that by now! Continue Reading…

Daddy Daughter Dates


Tuesday night I took my daughters on a date.  A friend at work was singing in a competition at the Blue Room, and it was advertised as ‘kid friendly,’ so we took the opportunity.  I am very glad that I did.

When I got home from work that evening, I was met by two beaming girls!  They were very, very excited for the night that was ahead of us.  They had been anticipating our evening together all day.  Together they had picked out a casual outfit (shorts and a nice shirt) and a more dressed up outfit.  (Depending on what kind of date it was going to be.)  They also picked out my outfit for me, a habit which I assume they inherited from their mom.

This preparation reminded me of 3 facts:     Continue Reading…

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