Effective Father Quality #5: An effective father understands his children

Seven Qualities of an Effective Father – Part Five

The Psalmist wrote, “O LORD, Thou hast searched me and known me. 2 Thou dost know when I sit down and when I rise up; Thou dost understand my thought from afar. 3 Thou dost scrutinize my path and my lying down, and art intimately acquainted with all my ways. 4 Even before there is a word on my tongue, behold, O LORD, Thou dost know it all. 5 Thou hast enclosed me behind and before, and laid Thy hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is too high, I cannot attain to it.” Psalm 139:1-6

This Psalm declares that God, the Father knows us intimately. If fathers are to be like their Father in Heaven, then fathers should strive to really know their children.

One of the axioms that we teach at our church is “Seek first to understand before being understood”. Understanding people is one of the keys of being understood. Parents are always trying to be understood. One of the best ways of accomplishing this is by first understanding their children.

One of our daughters is very logical and rational. She excelled in mathematics. Whenever I needed to be understood by her, I needed to appeal to her rational and logical side. Emotional appeals where less compelling to her in certain areas of her life. She wanted to understand the whys and the wherefores.

Another daughter is extremely relational. She loves people and relies on the way she feels about things. She is not illogical or irrational, but feelings are very important, especially the feelings of others. So whenever I needed to be understood by her, I needed to explain how I felt about things and how it affected other people and her.

Our third daughter is a combination of the other two. Having her understand me was perhaps the easiest because I could approach her in either way and she would understand. As a result, she probably understood both father and mother the best.

Understanding our children is so very important in being an effective father.

Remember this. Each one of our children is so very different. We cannot approach them or raise them in exactly the same way. We vary our parenting based on their differences. In order to know their differences, we need to understand them

Do you understand your children? How well do you know them?

Something to think about…