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How to Dad

Being a Dad is awesome.

Dads are their children’s heroes.

When I come home after work, my youngest stands at the railing waiting for me to pull up in the mini-van, yelling “Dada, Dada!” My four-year-old wakes up in the morning, finds me and just wants to snuggle before beginning the day.

Dads are known for putting together great race tracks. For being able to have a civil discourse about politics, as much as slime or snot. For building fires, forts, fixing cars, and capturing pesky raccoons.

Dads are awesome.

Our children will understand discipline, justice, mercy, love, courage, and the sacrifice of God the Father more completely when they witness these in their daily life through us, their dads.

Here are some guidelines for becoming a great hero dad to your kids:

1. Be the primary disciplinarian in your home.

When the father comes home, the expectation is that the children have been obedient at school and towards their mother. If they haven’t been, the children know that consequences will follow. When the father speaks, respect is expected. The children know they need to listen. Dad also enforces the expectation that children ought to respect their mother and ensures there is order in the home.

2. Don’t be too comfortable.

Dads ought to stay away from comfort zones. They are often the ones to notice their children being lax or not moving forward. Dads are made to push their kids’ limits, to encourage them to pursue excellence, to take risks, to try new things, and to be ok with failing. Fathers model to the children how to calculate risk and to have the courage to take chances.

3. Be their biggest fan.

Children seek approval. Whether it’s following a basketball game, or coming home from their first job, a child wants their dad’s approval. Particularly, there is in every man a desire to seek and receive the approval of his father, and it is the father’s job to give that approval when his son succeeds, and to withhold it when his son does something shameful.

4. Be the protector of your daughter’s chastity.

Dads ought to model for their daughters what qualities make a real man, and how a real man ought to act. A man protects what is beautiful. He does not watch porn. He does not prey on other women. He does not use lewd or offensive language, and ensures that his daughters aren’t exposed to indecent material. Fathers have the honour of walking their daughters down the aisle and offering them to another man who will then take over the responsibility of protecting the daughter’s chastity.

5. Learn to fix simple things.

Be a jack-of-all-trades to your kids, and pass on those skills to them. Don’t hire a professional each time you need to do something like install a toilet, change the oil, unclog a dishwasher, or wire a ceiling fan.

6. Cherish your wife and let your kids witness it.

Dads put their wives first before their children. They kiss their wife first when they get home from work. They show love and affection to their wife so that the children see where his priorities lie.

7. Finally, dads are the key when it comes to their children knowing God the Father.

Our children come to know who God the Father is through their earthly father. The gravitas here is significant. God has revealed Himself to us a Father. We, dads, get our name from Him. Our children will understand discipline, justice, mercy, love, courage, and the sacrifice of God the Father more completely when they witness these in their daily life through us, their dads.

Semper Fidelis,

Kenton E. Biffert


Kenton is a writer and speaker, and works at Our Lady Seat of Wisdom College as an adjunct professor and the Dean of Students. Together with his wife, they homeschool their 8 children, explore the wilds of Ontario in the canoe, and read voraciously. To learn more about the art of fatherhood, visit Kenton's personal page.

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