I remember when I was inducted into fatherhood. June 1 1995. I was about to become 21 years old in 7 days and was excited because I was going to be a father and I was terrified because I was going to be a father. Ready or not the mantle of fatherhood was dawning on me.
I felt the heavy responsibility of fatherhood awaiting me. I knew how crucial a father is to a child. I knew how a father could impact the life of a child. But I knew that because from the age of five I grew up without one. Growing up, I felt the void of a father in my life. I didn’t know what I was missing but I knew I was missing something, especially after my grandpa Tony passed before my teen years. Grandpa filled the fatherhood void in my life and spent as much time with me as he could. I thank God for the love he allowed me to experience through my grandpa Tony.
When the mantle of fatherhood fell on me I was ill equipped for the responsibility. I was young and still insecure of many things. I knew a father had to be a provider because my dad did provide for us growing up. He paid what he needed and gave extra at times.
But I also knew a dad had to have presence.
Presence – the state or fact of existing, occurring, or being present in a place or thing.
A dad needed to be there and exist around his children. I knew that because of the lack of presence I had when my grandpa Tony passed. I missed, longed and craved for the presence of a father. Never underestimate the presence of a father with his child. But presence isn’t enough.
Your presence needs to be active presence.
Active – engaged in action; characterized by energetic work, participation
I knew I needed to be present because of the lack of presence I experienced. In my early years I was present with my kids but I lacked active presence. I was present but wasn’t engaged, expounding energy or participating in life together. We were just present together. Who knows what opportunities I have missed by not being actively present. Presence is great but not enough. Your presence needs to be active and involved with your children.
Active presence is great but it also has to be intentional.
Intentional – done with intention or on purpose
What legacy do you want to leave your son’s and daughters? What qualities do you want to instill in them? How do you want them to live? All these questions and more require a father to be intentional or have intentional active presence. A father needs to know where he is leading his children. Intentional active presence means you don’t leave it to the school, friends, culture or the many other influences in the world to mold your children. Father’s we must be the ones to mold and fashion our children. Lead, guide, train with the end in mind.
Intentional active presence is phenomenal. There is one key ingredient missing godly.
Godly – conforming to the laws and wishes of God; devout; pious.
I must say without God rescuing me from the pit of despair, I have no idea where I would be today. Certainly not here writing this blog. I was on a road of self destruction when God was intentionally activly present with me.
even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, (Eph. 1:4-5)
For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure (Phil. 2:13).
God is intentionally activly present in your life. He draws you, saves you, adopts you and continues to work in you for His good pleasure.
Godly is conforming to become like God. Godly intentional active presence in your parenting is parenting your child like God parents us. God did not leave us without a manual.
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,
(2 Pet. 1:3)
God has provided His Word, His Spirit and the fellowship of the saints, His Church to help us accomplish godly inentional active presence.
This is the goal and where we fail we pray for God’s grace to abound.
May God’s love abound to you today.