10 Challenges Every Dad Must Conquer

Devotional

Day 5 You’re living with failure and regret.


Great Expectations


We may have started off on the right foot as dads, but we quickly failed. You’re not alone. Residing in each of us is a sin nature that pushes against our best intentions. “For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out” (Rom. 7:18). 


And the failures just piled up. We broke promises. We got angry. The growing list of parenting mistakes only raises a cloud of doubt. I haven’t been a good father. I may never be a good father.


Let me assure you: your story is not complete.


You’ve had failures as a father, but you are not a failure. To dismiss yourself as a failure is to dismiss the ability of God to work in your life. 


So where does the doubt about yourself come from? It comes from focusing on the wrong benchmark in your life. It’s good to have a standard and expectations for yourself, but make sure it’s the right benchmark. If you want a benchmark for what it means to be the best father ever, don’t settle for any of these faulty examples:



  • Your own father.

  • The antithesis of your own father.

  • Some idealized (fictional!) dad in a Hallmark movie.


Your standard should be God Himself. We’re invited to look to Him as our Father. The Model Prayer begins: “Our Father in heaven…” (Matt. 6:9). Consider what makes Him the perfect Father.


God the Father loves unconditionally. God the Father does not say, “I love you because _____.” He says, “I love you no matter what.” 


God the Father is always there. Try as we may, we all have seasons when we’re not there for a son or daughter like we want to be. But God can — and is. 


What benchmark are you trying to live up to as a dad?