As a dad, there is no greater joy than watching my son grow and learn new things. I am constantly amazed at how quickly he picks up on things and develops his skills. He is quite the talker…and eater! One of my favorite parts of every day is when I walk through the door after work and I hear him say, “Daddy’s home!!!” and he runs and gives me a big hug! It quickly reminds me that no matter what else happened prior to that moment, I can enjoy the hug from my child. And that attention that I chose to give him since he was just a tiny baby has proven itself day after day as it changes my perspective on life.
I recently heard an interview from the National Youth Director of the Assemblies of God. In this interview, he shared a couple of recent statistics about our young people today that I found to be alarming. He said the average 8th grade student receives less than 10 minutes of undivided attention from their dad per week. He also stated that over 40% of today’s teenagers do not have a dad that they talk to on a regular basis. This is a trend that we need to be aware of and take action towards…
An example to follow. It doesn’t matter whether you are a workingman, a stay-at-home-dad, an entrepreneur, or an unemployed man…God has charged you with a responsibility to lead…to be a selfless representation of your creator…to reflect the work-ethic, diligence, and compassion of Jesus.
Today’s young people, whether they are your children or not, need godly men to be able to follow toward Jesus.
It always amazes me to see how much Grady wants to be like me. When my back is hurting and I need to stretch, he wants to lie on the floor next to me. When I’m in my office, he wants to check his emails too. When I’m driving he wants to drive with me. He watches my life and models what I do.
Paul wrote frequently in the New Testament letters about how people could follow him as he followed Christ. This is the very claim that we, as men, need to be willing to make today. We need more men serving in the kids and youth areas of the local church. We need more men who will mentor and coach a high school student, or a small group. We need more men who will welcome young people into their lives to model an example worth following. The beauty is, you do not have to be perfect to be followed, you just have to be walking in the direction towards Christ.
Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ. – 1 Corinthians 11:1
1. As a man, think about how you could give and become an example to the next generation. Here are a few ideas:
- Find a young person you can invest in.
- Create your own summer internship, or commit to doing a Bible study with them.
- Talk with your spouse about welcoming some young people into your home on a regular basis.
- Volunteer with the kids or students at church