Monday, June 22, 2009

10 Attributes of Outstanding Fathers

By Bill Shuler, Pastor, Capital Life Church, Arlington, Virginia

This week President Obama called for a national conversation on responsible fatherhood and healthy families resulting in a renewed interest in the role of fathers and mentors. In 2000, Time magazine featured a cover story entitled, “The Hottest Jobs of the Future.” The article prognosticated the imminent extinction of fatherhood with the provocative thought that “between in-vitro fertilization and cloning, dads could become dinosaurs.” As significant portions of children in America grow up without a father present, it is time to consider the role and value of fatherhood.

The following are 10 attributes of outstanding fathers:

1. Dads who find their role as being more than a breadwinner and disciplinarian.

2. Dads who listen with undivided attention.

3. Dads who have the courage to embrace responsibility and make long-term commitments.

4. Dads who validate their children with the precious commodities of time and genuine interest.

5. Dads who love moms well.

6. Dads who invest values and model virtue.

7. Dads who are not afraid to be vulnerable and who verbally express their love.

8. Dads who are faithful.

9. Dads who place family over career and advancement.

10. Dads who find their greatest legacy in loving their families with excellence.

As we celebrate Father’s Day we honor fathers, stepfathers, and father figures, both living and dead, who made a profound investment in our lives. The final words of the Old Testament Scriptures speak of a “turning of the hearts of the fathers to their children and children to their fathers.” Within these words may be the key to ensuring that fathers do not become an extinct breed.

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