Today’s guest post is from Jay Payleitner, an event speaker and the author of over a dozen books on family relationships, including the bestseller, 52 Things Kids Needs from a Dad. Don’t miss his latest title, The Dad Book, now on Vyrso. To connect with Jay, visit his website is jaypayleitner.com
About five years ago, I finally replaced our faded and flawed garage door. It cost me $1,200 and made all the difference in the world when you pulled up to our home. That new door was crisp, clean, and flawless. I was confident it would stay that way because–even though my sons played driveway stickball—I had specifically selected a heavy-duty door so the wiffle balls wouldn’t leave a dent.
Eight days later, I pulled up to a driveway of four college boys playing stickball. My eyes went straight to three gashes in my new $1,200 garage door. As I had planned, there were no wiffle ball dents. But it turns out that once in a while on the backswing a stickball bat—which is really just a broom handle wrapped with athletic tape—will strike the garage door with enough force to leave a noticeable crease in the surface. Did I mention that door had cost me $1,200?
So, what did this dad do? Did I rage?
Claiming a small victory for dads everywhere, I’m proud to say I did not rage. (Yes, I can hear your applause.) Now, it helped that my son, Isaac, jogged out to the street to meet me with a sincere apology. But just as important, my mind quickly calculated what was going on. There were no beer cans scattered on the lawn. No police squad cars were pulling up with bad news. No creepy video games were crashing and slashing in a dark basement. My son and three of his life-long friends had chosen to hang out in my front yard and compete in the time-honored game of stickball. What kind of investment does that require? Broom handle: $3. Wiffle balls: $6. A garage door with stickball bruises: priceless. (Marked down from $1,200.)
Gentlemen, hear me. Please don’t stress out every time a floor gets scuffed, a table gets scratched, or a door gets dented. After all, it’s just stuff. And stuff doesn’t last. Relationships are the one thing that we can take with us into eternity. [Click to tweet!] That’s why you want your home to be a place where unconditional love and overflowing grace reside. You want kids from near and far to feel welcome and comfortable. As a bonus, you’ll always know where your own kids are and who they’re with.
There’s a story told by Harmon Killebrew, the great power hitter for the Minnesota Twins, during his induction ceremony into the Hall of Fame. He recalled how one day he and his brother were roughhousing in the front yard. His mother stepped out of the screen door and called out, “You’re tearing up the grass.” Harmon’s dad happened to be within earshot and reminded his wife, “We’re not raising grass. We’re raising boys.”
You’ve heard it before, but it’s worth repeating. Your kids will grow up so fast. They’ll be gone before you know it. After that, you’ll have plenty of time to re-sod, re-paint, re-screen, re-carpet, and relax.
“Fathers, do not exasperate your children, so that they will not lose heart.” Colossians 3:21 (NASB)
Check out Jay Payleitner’s, The Dad Book, now on Vyrso, for inspiration, ideas, and encouragement for dads to engage with their kids and connect them with God.
Today’s guest post is from Jay Payleitner, an event speaker and the author of over a dozen books on family relationships, including the bestseller, 52 Things Kids Needs from a Dad. Don’t miss his latest title, The Dad Book, now on Vyrso. To connect with Jay, visit his website is jaypayleitner.com About five years ago, I finally replaced […]