It takes courage to be a ‘Dad’

By Pastor Nate Bjorge, Faith Lutheran Church

I did not have high expectations when my family went to see the movie “Courageous” at the theater in Little Falls. But it did not take long before the story pulled me in and touched on every emotion. Even my eight-year-old son came out of the theater saying that it was the best movie he has even seen. There is a saying that any man can become a father, but not every father becomes a dad. This movie challenges every man to have the courage to become the husband and dad that every wife and child longs for.

There is a pivotal scene early in the movie where a young daughter asks her father to dance and he refuses. I remember being at a wedding reception some years ago and a young girl at the table next to mine asked her father to dance and he said, in no uncertain terms, – “no!” I remember the sadness that fell upon the girl’s face as she walked away from the table.

Child psychiatrist, Stella Chess, conducted a groundbreaking decades-long study on child development. She determined that a “woman’s childhood relationship with her father is important to her throughout her life. Regardless of age or status, women who seem most clear about their goals and most satisfied with their lives and personal and family relationships usually remember that their fathers enjoyed them and were actively interested in their development.”

Jesus had an intimate relationship with his Father in heaven. In speaking to his Father, he used the Aramaic term “abba,” which can mean dear father or daddy. St. Paul reminds us that through Christ we are adopted as God’s children, “Because you are children, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, ‘Abba, Father.’” (Galatians 4:6) Our heavenly Father desires an intimate relationship with us. It is our Father’s desire for us to live with Him eternally. The relationship between Jesus and his heavenly Father is the model for our relationships with our children. And as we grow in our relationship with our heavenly Father we will become better fathers.

Dr. Jane R. Rosen-Grandon said that, “A daughter’s relationship with her father is usually her first male-female relationship. From Dad, little girls gain their first reflection of themselves as a female. They develop a sense of acceptance and value. Self-respect is largely shaped by this early relationship. In short, their relationship with their Father will affect how they regard themselves.”

Fathers, you have an opportunity to be courageous and make a lasting investment in the life of your daughter(s) March 18, by attending the “Father Daughter Ball” at the Falls Ballroom. This will be an evening when you can let your daughter know that she is your princess. Even if you can’t dance (you are not alone) you can rise above your embarrassment and create a memory that will forever remain in your daughter’s heart.

For more information, call Kate Bjorge (320) 632-0748 or Mark Whittington (320) 360-4095. If you are looking for some encouragement to become the man that God has called you to be, rent or buy the movie “Courageous.”