Every father leaves his mark upon his child. That mark can impact generations.
My father became my dear friend before he passed into eternity, but we had a
difficult history. He didn’t become a believer until late in life. Before choosing to
follow Jesus, he made some choices that
were incredibly destructive to our family.
Those choices left marks of anger, rejection, and abandonment.
Consequently, I grew up with a distorted
picture of fatherhood. However, when I became a believer, that distorted picture was
gradually replaced by one that displayed
the beauty of Biblical fatherhood. Destructive marks were replaced with marks of
grace, acceptance, and faithfulness.
I know this is a sensitive topic. Personally, I was affected by it, so I understand it
can be painful for some people. However,
by exploring it while anchored in Christ’s
unconditional love, I experienced a wave
I had the great privilege of listening to
The Mark of Faithfulness
several Godly men tell stories about their
experience as fathers and sons. I’d like to
share a few of their insights with you, and
discuss how fathers can mark their chil-
dren with love.
Children are marked forever by faithful
Scott Gibson, a family counselor and
father of three, explains: “I knew my father would be faithful. He was consistent.
I counted on him. I didn’t fear that he
would turn his love away from me. There
were moments that I questioned that
love, moments that I felt his chastisement—sometimes deserved, sometimes
not—but I knew that he would be there.
And that he would provide for me.”
The Mark of Acceptance
Children thrive when they know their
father’s acceptance is not performance-based.
Frank Ley, father of two, was marked
by his father’s acceptance. He explains:
“My father never ridiculed me or put me
down, so I always felt that I belonged in
The Mark of Commitment
Children observe how we relate to the
world, and they are marked by our
Scott Pederson grew up a missionary kid. He was profoundly marked by
his father’s commitment to the Gospel.
“When I was growing up, my father was
ridiculed by all sorts of people for being
so foolish as to give up everything to become a missionary. I felt the sting of their
comments, and even agreed with some of
them. But to see and to be with a man
who had conviction and a commitment
to what God called him to do . . . I am
privileged to be the son of a man who focused on that which really mattered in a
way I’ll never forget.”
To Be a Skillful Father, You Must
If you are a father, you, too, will indelibly
mark your child. What kind of mark will
It seems ironic that such an important
facet of our lives—our family relation-
ships—often receive so little strategic
by Stacy Farrell
A Father’s Mark
Children are marked forever by faithful love.