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Fathering children to make them feel important

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Charles Ighele

Every fathering style of mothering style that makes a child feel bad is contrary to God’s original purpose. You can never get the best out of your child when you always make that child feel bad about himself or herself.

Some ways you can make them feel important to include praising them frequently. Use words of affirmation and love. Yes, they may have their weaknesses, but they also have great strengths. Praise them more than you correct them.

Celebrate them when they accomplish anything. Always let them know in words and by actions that you are proud of them no matter how young or old they are. This makes them feel important and has good memories of you.

In one of his books, Dr. David Youngi Cho wrote about how his son was not doing well academically. Instead of making the boy feel bad about himself or saying, “you are too dull. You are always playing around instead of reading your books.” He did not.

For example, if Cho’s son was graded a D in an examination, Youngi Cho would give him a pat on the back and make him realise that if he was intelligent enough to score a D, he was intelligent enough to score a C, a B and eventually, an A. He encouraged the boy to work harder until he eventually became one of the best students in his class.

It is very necessary for a father to know how to listen to his children. It is even more important for him to listen not to reply but to understand. Many people make the mistake of listening to reply instead of listening to understand. One of the qualities of a great father is to be a patient listener. One of the ways children feel important is when they are listened to; when they are heard.

Create time to gist with your children no matter their ages. Gist about serious and unserious matters.

As the father of the family, create a proper atmosphere for every family activity. Joke with them, gist with them about life’s lessons. Build-in them the “I can do it” spirit, which will, in turn, make them have an “I can do it” image and this will enable them to face life’s problems with the self-image of a winner and not with the mentality of a loser. Fathers, put the “I can do” spirit into your children. This was what God did to Joshua and Gideon in the Bible. Give them identity. Give them approval.

Take them out from time to time.

Organise family parties. These parties do not have to be costly. For example, when our children were much younger, we organised a monthly party called ‘The B and G party.’ B is for banana and G, for groundnuts (peanuts). We would sing special songs, dance, and toast to a prosperous family. The singing and dancing used to excite the children. It gives them sweet memories now that they are adults.

Make your children feel special during their birthdays. If you cannot organise a cheap family party or a party that will involve inviting their friends, you can buy some juice with which the household can use in toasting to a victorious life for the birthday celebrant.

Be a house husband for their sakes. For example, whenever I am in town right from when I started having my children till now, I make sure I do not spend my evenings out. Unless it is an evening service, or I am invited to minister somewhere, I make sure I spend my evenings with my family.

I may work for one or two hours at home after they have gone to bed. Invent ways to make your children feel important. Love you.


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