A Note from Lifeway Girls: Over the past several months, several dads have reached out to Lifeway Girls asking about biblical resources for their daughters. We’re so grateful for those men who believe in investing in their girls, and we want to do everything we can at Lifeway Girls to equip every dad to know he has what it takes to point his daughter to Christ. And what better way to do that than hearing directly from a dad?! Make sure to share this post today with a dad you know and love!
Investing…most all of us do it, we fund our IRAs or our 401s in order to secure our retirement. But do we invest in our children? Because the payoffs are much greater and far more reaching.
We’ve all heard the expression ‘you can’t take it with you’ but I’d argue there is an exception to that. My dad once told me that our children are the only thing we can take with us. I never fully understood the impact of that until I became a dad myself to two wonderful girls and learned the importance of pointing them to Christ and being an earthly example for them of our Heavenly Father and how He loves us unconditionally.
As a young dad, I was encouraged by godly men I trusted to invest in our girls, not with gifts but with time and by setting an example before them daily. Examples such as complementing them, encouraging them, and showing a genuine interest in what they were doing. It is our responsibility as dads to set the example for our children to see lived out every day and mold their character. You may have heard people say “It’s important to have quality time with your children” and I certainly agree but I would like to expand on that to say the only way to have quality time is to have QUANTITY time. It is out of the quantity that you’ll get the quality. You can’t just schedule quality time.
I can’t stress enough the importance of spending time with your girls. Take them on walks and listen to their hearts, take them with you when you run an errand, take them on dates and teach them what it’s like to be treated like a lady. Open the door for them, bring them flowers, randomly leave them notes letting them know how much you love them and how special they are. I can guarantee you that if you don’t give them the love and attention they so greatly need, especially during their teen years, there are plenty of teenage boys out there who will…and their motivation will not be the same as yours. Just be intentional and have fun with them! One of my favorite books that’s filled with great ideas is She Calls me Daddy by Robert Wolgemuth.
Also, invest in your daughters by praying with and for them regularly, and let them see you pray. Pray for their future husband…early in their lives, as well as for the parents who are raising that young man. I can’t over emphasize the importance of this. One of the most overwhelming moments in my life happened over 30 years ago when I asked my potential in-laws for permission to marry their daughter. As I sat across from them nervously awaiting their reply, I saw my future father-in-law slightly tear up and say, “Son, for over 20 years we never knew your name, but we’ve been praying for you the whole time”. I get emotional even now as I think about it and made a promise to myself that one day, if God blessed us with children, that I would do the same…and we did. We prayed for godly husbands for our girls, and you know what? The godly husbands that the Lord brought into our girls’ lives FAR exceeded our expectations. We’ve begun that prayer journey again now as we await the arrival of our first grandchild this June.
Being a father is easy, but being a loving, caring, compassionate dad is hard work! There are many demands on your time but you need to keep investing in your daughters at the top of your priority list. It’s critical to keep the lines of communication open with your girls. One of my favorite authors, James Dobson has written numerous books on parenting, two of my favorites are Bringing up Girls and Dads and Daughters. They are full of practical ways to guide your girls through the tough adolescent years.
Don’t let this critical time get away from you, you only have one shot at it and they’ll be gone before you know it. As teens they’ll begin making decisions that will affect the rest of their lives…as well as yours!
Buck Overbey graduated from Virginia Tech and has advanced degrees from both Ball State and Air University. He served over 20 years on active duty with the Air Force and retired as a Lt Colonel. He and his wife Karen have been married over 30 years and have 2 adult children, Jessica and Bethany.