Willing to Change Direction


It doesn’t matter how far off course you've gotten as a father. If you're willing to change direction, you'll take a tremendous step toward fulfilling God’s calling on your life.

You know the stereotype… guys don’t like asking for directions, much less changing course when they are sure they’re doing fine and will find their way.

It’s a tired cliché, but it’s also grounded in human nature. We don’t tend to want to change course, or when we see the need to change something in our lives, it’s not always easy to do.

I know when I am reluctant to change direction, or even when I’m willing to change direction, I’m too often tempted to make the choice, good or bad, about me rather than about the best for my family.  Wallowing in guilt?  Making myself feel better? Both are powerful motivators…

Recently, Focus released a new book by renowned leadership expert and author Ken Blanchard. Ken, accompanied by Tricia Goyer and Phil Hodges, deftly lays out how dads and moms can rethink their leadership role and influence, and be more effective at following the example of Jesus Christ.

I’d like to share with you some of the wisdom from co-author (and Lead Like Jesus co-founder) Phil Hodges as he lays out the power of a Dad who possesses the heart willing to change direction when needed.  Here’s what Phil shared:

It doesn’t matter where you are and how far off course and off purpose you have been as a father—if you are willing to change direction it will be a tremendous step forward in fulfilling God’s calling on your life.

What you do from now on as a father matters to God and can be done with access to all the powers needed to make it a God glorifying endeavor. The journey to godly fatherhood is to answer the highest calling and purpose you can have as a man. It will provide you the deepest joy and satisfaction in glorifying God.

The Bottom Line: If guilt about the past is prompting you to take a new look at your fatherhood, it won't sustain you through the tough territory required to mend and grow your relationships with your children.

Only love can do this.

Only love can sustain it.

The source of the sustaining love is the One who has loved you and your family through all the days before today and all the days yet to comeJesus.

If your desire to become a better father is all about repairing your own self image and feeling better about yourself, it can easily become another form of selfishness. In a broad sense being a godly father is not about you. It is about the eternal well being of your children and the role you are preparing them to take in the lives of generations to come.

Inner peace and joy will be the result of this journey only if it you travel it seeking to serve rather than be served.

Take a few minutes to look into your heart and ask God to help you see the true nature of your motives for becoming a more godly father.

One way to get clear about your deep down motives in becoming a better father is to answer the following five times:

“I desire to be a better father to my children so that [fill in the blanks]…

So that…

So that…

So that…

So that…

If you are not particularly proud of your answers, it's okay—a few minutes of brutal honesty will pay big dividends in getting you on the right path for the right reasons.

Before talking to anyone else, a good next step will be to confess your secret to God ask for His forgiveness. Then ask Him to guide you on your journey.

If your answers are ones that you think would make Jesus smile then thank God and ask Him to continue to guide you in making Him real to your children and their mother.      

This post was written by Phil Hodge.

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