As I look back over my adult life I realize something- I’ve never been one for making New Year’s resolutions. I’m not against them, they’re just not something I’ve ever given any attention to. Over the past few years, however, I’ve begun establishing personal and professional goals. This post is one of my personal goals in 2014:
I don’t want to be a “good” dad in 2014. I want to be a great one!
The thought occurred to me this past week when I had a lot of free time to spend time with my kids. It was a good Christmas break, but as always, there were distractions. I did a pretty good job of staying away from “work” stuff, but it still lingered. I was decent at paying attention to my kids, but the corner of my eye was continually occupied by something.
In this New Year, I don’t want to settle for mediocrity any longer. I want this year to count for my family and our life together. I want us to arrive at the end of this year and look back with full hearts. I want to be able to say that my greatest focus, my highest priority, my biggest concern, were the 8 people who call me dad, and husband. Therefore, “good,” is not going to be “good” enough. I want it to be great!
Over the holiday break I attended and participated in the life-celebration of a young man who passed away long before his time. The service was beautiful- a perfect mixture of celebration, truth, and remembrance. I listened as his mom, sister, and friends shared stories from his life. They talked about his smile, the way he loved others unconditionally, and his loyalty as a friend, a brother, and a son.
I couldn’t help but picture my children, my family, and my life as their words spilled from the podium.
The thought occurred to me- My children know that I help people. As a pastor, they know that my job is to pray for the needs of others, serve the world around me with all of my heart, and be there when people are in need. I have even heard them make comments to my wife about how my job is to help people.
Someday, when my life is over, I hope that my kids can stand before people and tell how their dad was a great pastor, friend, and leader. I hope they can say, from an honest heart, that I served people, led people, loved people, and was there for any and all who were in need. But what about them? Was I there for them? Did I lead them? Did they feel loved above all? What about me as their father? Will they say I was great at that? Or just good in comparison?
My hope and my prayer is that I choose to be great as a father in this brand new year. My heart is to serve people, all people, but the first people I should be a servant to is my family… my wife… my children. If I’m not serving and loving them first, nothing else really matters.
I don’t want to just be “good” as a father and a husband. Good is not good enough any longer. I’ve been good at it for too long. It’s time to be great. It won’t be easy. I can already feel the pressure rising up. This is not a choice that I can make at the beginning of the year, but everyday during the year and beyond.
Here’s to 2014. By God’s grace only, may it be a year of greatness!
Question: In what ways have you been “good” for too long? What do you need to choose to be “great” at in the new year? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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