I hope you had a good Father’s Day.
Have you seen the movie Interstellar, remember where Matthew McConaughey is watching a video of his kids?
That was basically me during church yesterday.
Father’s Day can be super emotional as a dad when you love your kids so much.
When there’s some hurt or distance between you and your kids.
When your Dad is gone.
Or all of the above.
Father’s Day is a great time to re-evaluate how you’re doing as a Dad,
to recommit to the role, to stepping up, reconnecting,
to being more present, being more intentional and purposeful.
To being a great, loving father.
Father’s Day is a great place to start over with your kids.
Every day is but especially Father’s Day.
What I realized today, driving home, the day after Father’s Day is as important or more important.
The day after the gifts, the BBQ
The day after the church service and the card.
The day after, when you’re back to normal, to your work schedule,
after the come-to-Jesus talk.
Your wife, your kids are in that in-between place,
the place where they want to trust what you’ve said,
hoping that you’re going to follow through.
And they’re hoping this time is going be different.
But they might be guarded and defensive.
This is where your actions need to line up with what you committed to.
Because a decision becomes a day,
a day becomes a week,
a week becomes a month,
a month becomes a year,
and your years become your life together together with your kids.
Maybe your wife and kids aren’t the ones holding onto hope today.
Maybe they’ve already given up.
Maybe you’re the one that’s hoping it will get better.
This is also where you need to battle through the fear of rejection, irrelevance and inadequacy.
Along with the fear of the unknown and negative self-talk.
This already hit me this weekend before Father’s Day and today the day after.
I’ve been working on communicating more directly and honestly with my kids.
And it’s not easy.
When it gets hard, the thoughts come
“See, it won’t work.”
“They don’t want to be closer.”
“If you had done a better job as a father, this wouldn’t be so hard.”
“They’re too busy.”
“It’s too little, too late.”
Harsh, nasty thoughts
that can make you want to fall back to familiar territory and give up on pursuing them or going deeper.
The way things are may make you feel alone.
But the temptation to stay the same tells you
at least it’s a familiar alone, a loneliness of your choosing.
It isn’t the aloneness that makes you feel out of control because
it’s vulnerable and dependent on the choosing and freedom of your kids.
I just want to encourage you to push through.
It might take more than a push, it might be a battle and one of the hardest things you’ve ever tried.
You won’t know, and you can’t control, if they want a relationship with you still.
You can control, and let them know, how much you want it.
If you didn’t make a decision to step things up, to reconnect
I encourage you to do that.
Think about it.
It’s not too late.