There are 4 brave men among 496 women on Jen Hatmaker’s For the Love Launch Team. Phillip Taylor is one of them. I asked Phillip to share his thoughts on Father’s Day, to add a little male perspective. He delivered a moving post on encouragement, affirmation, and the power of our words. Please welcome Baseball Preacher, Phillip Taylor.
It is 6:00 on Sunday night, and I am sitting in one of the places I like the least – the emergency room. Although, as much as this situation stinks, there is one bright spot in my evening at the hospital. It is the same bright spot that has been in my life now for twenty-one years ~ the presence of my wife, Shannon.
Shannon has stood by me through so much in our lives together. One challenge in recent years was the loss of my salary (for 14 months). This hardship led us to move from our beloved home in order for me to start a new career. This also included moving from our church home where we shared our closest friendships.
Throughout these life-changing transitions, there have been two special people who have had a front row seat to all that has transpired in our home. Our teenage children.
While our kids have certainly not been shielded from the heartache of moving, there is one primary ingredient that, in my opinion, has made the biggest difference in helping them make the necessary transition to our new location. That one ingredient has been my wife’s public and private verbal support of me as the leader of our home.
In Kelly’s previous blog, she wrote, “Speak life into your husband by encouraging specific fatherly traits you see in him. Do not neglect saying affirming things to him in front of your children as well.”
And Kelly is so spot on! I do not know where our family would be were it not for my wife’s constant encouragement and affirmation of my efforts of leadership and parenting, as well as her willingness to follow me through the unexplainable, tumultuous waters of starting over.
There are a few phrases I recall hearing from my wife regularly throughout some of the toughest times in our journey. (As a side note, she didn’t wait until the really tough times arrived to share these with me. I am happy to say I have heard these throughout our whole married life.)
Here are some of the encouraging words my wife has diligently spoken into my life:
“I believe in you!”
“I am so proud of the way you lead our home!”
“We are with you!”
“Thank you for listening to God through this.”
It is from this perspective as Father’s Day approaches that I cannot think of a single gift greater to give your husband than the continual faithful support that communicates, “I am with you, no matter what!” For it is then and only then, that a man can confidently lead his family into whatever direction God chooses for your home.
May this Father’s Day be one that is not remembered primarily for the gifts that were bought, but for the gift that money cannot buy – the unconditional love and support that every father desperately needs. Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there doing everything they can to lead their homes well!
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