The Today Show recently featured the most emotionally moving segment I have ever seen. At the time of the original airing, Dr. James Wolf had been given three months to live as he suffered from terminal pancreatic cancer.
Even though she was not yet engaged, Dr. Wolf’s daughter Rachel desired the traditional Father-Daughter Wedding Dance. With his probable passing soon to take place, Rachel came up with a very creative solution. Have the dance now!
With guests, flowers, limousines, and a reception all in tow, Rachel and her dad dressed in wedding attire went ahead and had their dance. Their time together was also filmed to later be shown on Rachel’s actual wedding day.
This video convicted me as a father. Am I the spiritually leader Dr. Wolf is? What type of legacy am I leaving?
As a way to get better as a father myself, I gleaned 13 Practices Of Effective Fathers from the video. See how you match up to the 13 items listed below. If you’re like me, you have some work to do.
- Effective Fathers Love Jesus – You cannot be the most effective earthly father possible if you don’t have a healthy relationship with your Heavenly Father.
- Effective Fathers Are Not Passive. They Deal With Reality – Dr. Wolf said, “There are a lot of things that I would’ve liked the girls to experience with me being there. And I’m not going to be there.”
- Effective Fathers Recognize And Take Advantage Of Opportunity – We are not promised tomorrow so as the reporter stated, “When it comes to making memories why wait?”
- Effective Fathers Make Good Decisions – When we are dying our thoughts are not on work-related items. As Dr. Wolf reminded us, “Each and every day we have a choice. We got a choice to love that person in front of us or not.”
- Effective Fathers Are Highly Motivated - I was moved to watch Dr. Wolf summon up every last bit of energy he had to overcome exhaustion and dance with his daughter. A legion of armies could not have kept him from that dance.
- Effective Fathers Leave A Godly Legacy – There are many competing voices in a father’s life. But Dr. Wolf understands that “It’s the relationships you build over the years that is the most important thing in life.”
- Effective Fathers Celebrate Milestones – Birthdays, anniversaries, family vacations, holidays and yes, weddings are a BIG deal. Highly effective fathers celebrate these days and make them memorable.
- Effective Fathers Deeply Love Their Children’s Mother – There is a good chance that all men, if we’re lucky enough to live that long, are going to need our wives to help us get dressed each day. There are few pictures in this world more beautiful than this type of lifelong sacrificial love.
- Effective Fathers Model The Type Of Man Our Daughters Will One Day Marry – Men, do you want your daughter to marry someone just like you? The reality is she most likely will. Something tells me Rachel is one day going marry a very wonderful man.
- Effective Fathers Sing And Dance With Their Daughters – It makes them feel like Cinderella.
- Effective Fathers Are Noticed By The World – The story of Dr. Wolf and Rachel has been told to the entire world. In a time when dysfunctional behavior is the norm, emotionally healthy fathers who put Christ and their families first are noticed by everyone in their sphere of influence.
- Effective Fathers Are Generous – Weddings are expensive but anything valuable costs money. Highly effective fathers are willing to pay whatever price is necessary to bless their children.
- Effective Fathers Are Loved Unconditionally – For many fathers, everyone wants something from them. The relationships are conditional. It is often only within the context of your immediate family that you are loved simply for being you. For fathers, there is great comfort and safety in a loving home.
Fathers, how did you measure up to this list 13 Practices of Effective Fathers? What areas can you improve on starting today?
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