I'm excited for the Courageous movie and bible study we will be beginning at our church Feb 12th. For those not familiar with the movie, the premise is a challenge to fathers to step into the role God has called them to in courageously leading their families. It thrills me to think that this challenge will be raised to so many fathers in our community. I am not yet a father myself, but one thing I am…is a statistic—a statistic that continues to become more and more rare.
I am a son that grew up in a home with a father who was present and active. I have a father who loves me, and tells me he loves me. I have a father who encourages me in my decisions, and is supportive of what I do. I have a father who affirmed my talents, and provided for me opportunities to use them. I have a father who loves the Lord, and raised me up in His truth. I have a father who read to me God’s word EVERY night throughout my childhood! My father walks by the leading of the Spirit so that he can lead by example. I am an advocate for courageous fatherhood, because my life is a testimony of the impact of courageous fatherhood! If it weren’t for my dad’s leadership and the leadership of other godly men in my life, I most likely wouldn’t be walking with the Lord the way I am today.
I want to share with you one of the most valued gifts I’ve ever been given. My dad and I went to Men’s retreat at Trout Lake camp one fall. That year the speaker was sharing on the value of a father blessing his children. The blessings of Fathers are prominent throughout scripture. Isaac blessed his sons, Jacob and Esau, and his blessings were prophetic to the lives they lived (Genesis 27). Jacob blessed all twelve of his sons (Genesis 49:28), and his grandsons (Genesis 48:9). King David, on the day the Ark of the Covenant was restored to the tabernacle, blessed his entire household (2nd Samuel 6:18, 20). The Heavenly Father himself, on the day Jesus was baptized into his ministry, spoke his own affirming blessing upon his son (Matthew 3:16-17). My dad decided that he too would write for me a blessing. For a day or so, he worked out what he wanted to say, and then one afternoon he handed me these thoughtful words written out on the back of an old bulletin he had in his bible.
“Heavenly Father, may Tyler become a man after your heart. May he live out the values of creativity and integrity in boldness. May he motivate others to Godliness through his gifts of art and proclamation. May he never grow weary of serving you. May he always reflect your glory. May his life be a pleasing act of worship to you. Amen.”
And then he left me with these words from Jeremiah.
23 This is what the LORD says:“Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom
or the strong man boast of his strength
or the rich man boast of his riches,
24 but let him who boasts boast about this:
that he understands and knows me,
that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness,
justice and righteousness on earth,
for in these I delight,”
declares the LORD.
When I finished reading what my dad wrote for me, he said. “You should give that back. I’ll type it up at home; we can make it look nice and frame it for you.” But already, that old bulletin scribbled upon with carefully planned out words had become precious to me, I didn’t want it any other way! I took it and cherished it.
Fathers, your words are powerful. They have the power to literally shape the future of your children. As I look at the words my father wrote and my heavenly father inspired, there is nothing I desire more greatly than to honor both my fathers in developing into the man described in my blessing.
Be strong and courageous fathers! Bless your children! Here is a great place to begin.
This site pointed me to the scriptures I shared as well as many others. It also has testimonies of the impact of blessings. Be encouraged and inspired!