‘…we loved you so much…’ 1 Thessalonians 2:8 NIV
Becoming a great dad comes from a man having a close relationship with his heavenly Father. Applying the principles Paul used when fathering his spiritual children can equip you to become a great dad. Speaking to his ‘children’, Paul demonstrates the warmth of a mother and the muscle of a father (see 1 Thessalonians 2:7–11). For the next few days, let’s look at some of Paul’s fathering principles: Making them feel loved. ‘…we loved you so much.’ Paul chose a seldom-used Greek word for love, not the usual word for unconditional love or brotherly affection. The word he used meant a strong, warm, spontaneous magnetism—an endearing term used normally with a very young child. Why would Paul speak this way to adults? Because the need to be loved is one we never outgrow! He wanted them to feel loved. The Bible says: ‘…the greatest of these is love.’ (1 Corinthians 13:13 NKJV) Dad, more than anything else, that is what your children need from you and it doesn’t have a thing to do with their age; they need it as much in adulthood as they did in childhood. Your teenager will probably cringe if you’re affectionate with them around their friends, but deep inside they’ll appreciate it. And it has nothing to do with their gender. Both sexes need to feel loved. Your teenage daughter is likely to return your hugs and words, while your teenage son will probably roll his eyes and grunt. Love them anyhow, until they’re old enough to tell you how good it felt!
SoulFood: 2 Kings 7–9, Luke 1:1–10, Ps 73:1–16, Pro 13:17–19
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright ©