In December 2012, my Dad underwent open heart surgery for a valve that wasn’t up to par. He had been having issues with it for many years and it finally came to the point where the doctors were not letting it go any further. I can remember it like yesterday being in the prep room and praying for him. I spoke over him that “God will give you a new heart” It wasn’t a heart transplant, per se, that my Dad would have but his heart would never be the same.
Do you remember when you came to the cross and accepted Jesus as Lord of your life? You came to Him and surrendered to Him that He would take control (or at least, that’s what you meant when you did it) of your life from that point further? Israel had this problem many different times throughout scripture. They would confess that In Ezekiel 11: 19; the prophet wrote “And I will give them singleness of heart and put a new spirit within them. I will take away their stony, stubborn heart and give them a tender, responsive heart.” God would then later call in chapter 18:31-32 “find yourselves a new heart and a new spirit. For why should you die, O people of Israel? I don’t want you to die, says the Sovereign Lord. Turn back and live!” God consistently called the people of Israel to have a heart transplant for Him. He desired to see their hearts turned from their ways and back to Him.
I love how God, being the ultimate Godly Dad, even gave us the instructions to receive that new heart. He gave us a prescription that would allow us to continue to use that new heart;
Psalms 51:10 – Seek the Physician
Proverbs 13:12 – The Prescription is Hope
Proverbs 4:20:21- Don’t Fail To Take Your Prescription
Psalms 119:11- Take Daily For Desired Results
Proverbs 17:3- Check Ups Are Regularly Given
It is so important that you and I, as Dads, give our children the prescription daily as well. Each day, our hearts need to be checked and the Word needs to be applied to that regiment.
Change is such a messy thing. In life, it causes the very strong to question their position in life. It will make the very weak confirm what they have feared. It will make the most ornery to become complacent. Well, that last part may have been a stretch. But the fact of the matter is that change is a messy thing. I have to be honest with you; I had to really pray before I approached the change that I wanted to make to Godly Daddy. I know that our mission from day one has been to engage our fathers into conversation and let them know that they are not alone. That mission is still a fact and will never change. However, I found myself looking at what was being written and wondered, are we meeting the core mission of what Godly Daddy was founded on? Am I reflecting what my day to day life with my children is? Frankly, I had to make a decision. Step down and close this site because I couldn’t meet that obligation or continue to write and change the format.
Well, quitting is not an option. As a Howell, I have instilled in my kids that Howells are not quitters. Yes, life is hard and things don’t go the way we plan. But we are not quitters. I can remember a time where Olivia was trying to learn how to get dressed. She struggled getting that shirt on. “It’s hard!” she would scream in resignation. Sara and I worked with her to make sure she knew that she had to learn how to put her clothes on. You ought to have seen the responses from family members. “Oh, she’s just a baby. “ or “You are too hard on her.” Seriously? Putting on clothes is being too hard on a child? Honestly, when you have three munchkins running on your feet, you need all the help you can get especially from them. I remember one of the times where she finally got it. “I did it!” she screamed with excitement. Yes, it is hard. Life is hard. But it doesn’t give you or me the right to give up.
Change is such a messy thing. It’s bound to happen even with the best of us. That change, the change that I know that we need to make as a blog is that we need to be adaptable to that change. The content that we, as bloggers, provide to you will be relevant to your everyday life. The books that we review will be relevant to your parenting, relationships, leadership, and so much more. The stories we share will be ones that will make you laugh at us, cry with us, or make you mad at us. Get ready. Change is messy…but change is good.
The problem with change is that it is constant. Change is not something that stops happening in life. As a matter of fact, change will make sure that it will happen at the most inopportune time in the most unreasonable way. You get a flat tire on the way to work as you’re running late. You lose your job right as a baby is being born into the household. You get a promotion in a season where you are ready to move on. The list could go on and on. I love the old adage “the only thing that is for certain is death and taxes.” I think we could add in that; change. There are many people that have embraced change and there are a few that have denied change, but there’s no stopping it. Change is for certain. Change will happen. We either will embrace it or we will run away from it.
In Ecclesiastes, Solomon wrote in Chapter 3 that “for everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest. A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build. A time to cry and a time to laugh…” etc. Solomon recognized that in everything there is a season, there is a moment, there is a purpose, and there is a plan. There is always a time for something to be born and a time for something to die. Change is always in the air. Change is certain to happen. How do we combat change? Embrace it.
I try not to be cynical. It is not something that I want to do. The old adage “if you don’t believe anything good will ever happen, you won’t be disappointed if it doesn’t” kind of rings a lot in my life. Naturally, I am a negative person. I have to force myself to believe that there are good things that happen in life. I have to make a concerted effort to be a positive person. The coffee mug could be half full of coffee and I will think “well…I am almost out of coffee….” But seriously, over the years I have certainly developed this toxic gift that I am constantly working on. I don’t want to be cynical, but you guys out there in the real world make it really hard for me not to be. When someone has been working their whole career to get ahead just to be left behind constantly, it is easy for that person to believe in the old adage that I mentioned earlier. When our finances continue to hit a brick wall, it is hard for me to be glad for the guy who was able to pay his house off and start his own business from scratch without borrowing a penny. I digress. My hope is that I can become as successful as Abraham Lincoln….without all the failures…
Time Line of Failures of Abraham Lincoln
1832- Defeated for State Legislature
1833- Failed in Business
1835-Lost his Fiancé
1836- Nervous Breakdown
1838- Defeated for Speaker
1843- Defeated for Nomination for Congress
1848- Lost Re-nomination
1849- Rejected for Land Officer
1854- Defeated for US Senate
1856- Defeated for Nomination for Vice President
1858- Defeated again for US Senate
1860-ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.”
Galatians 6:9 NLT
I was surprised that this article did not mention that Lincoln had lost two of his four sons to death while they were children and one while he was in the White House. Not to mention that his wife was clinically insane. Lincoln had a lot of opportunities to develop an attitude that was toxic. It would have been easy for him to become cynical. It is easy to think only good things happen to certain people and the rest of us are left behind to remove the manure. It is important that we have our eyes set on greater things and better things. I am not proclaiming some message of weird witchcraft. But I am saying that the Bible verse from Proverbs 23:7 which reads “As [a man] thinks in his heart, so is he.” If you are thinking doom and gloom, do not be surprised if you get doom and gloom. If you think your kids are hoodlums, do not be shocked when they are arrested for disorderly conduct…okay, that may be a stretch. But do not be shocked if they grow up causing trouble. If we can get our minds around this, what power would we have as men of God? Amazing!