One of the greatest moments as a father is walking into the house and seeing your smiling children jump in joy at your mere appearance. My youngest son, at 19 months, will blare out “Daaaaad!” at the top of his lungs, often winning the “loudest” and “biggest smile” contest. His brown-eyed twin sister, just as excited, will run to me, ponytail swaying back and forth, wanting me to pick her up and kiss her. And my eldest son will squeeze me tight, excitedly telling me about the frog he caught that day or the unidentified bug he trapped.
Those are the moments when you want to stop time and treasure, forever.
Then there are those not-so-great moments when you mess up as a father. Once, I sent my eldest son to his room when I misunderstood the situation and he in fact had done nothing wrong. Another time, I failed to follow through on a promise I had made to him. Still another time, I raised my voice when it wasn’t warranted.
As parents, we have several biblical roles. One is to rear our children in a loving home and to teach them to obey, thereby preparing them for a life of obeying a holy God who loves them even more. Another role, though, is to model for them the life of a Christian. That is, they should see in us not only their authority figure, but also a fellow sinner, and hopefully a fellow brother or sister in Christ. They should observe us praying to God and reading His Word, and they should see us serving others and living a life of obedience to our Creator.