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Love and Sacrifice
Theme of the Week: How to Be a Good Dad
Tuesday, July 22, 2014

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Key Bible Verse: This is how we know what love is: Christ gave his life for us. We too, then, ought to give our lives for others! (1 John 3:16, GNT)

Dig Deeper: John 10:11; 15:9-17

Look in the Bible and you'll find that love, the secret to fatherhood, often gets tied to the idea of sacrifice. "Love bears all things, … endures all things," Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 13:7 (ESV). In Romans 12:1-2, he writes, "I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God. … Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is" (NIV).

The Lord wills that we be good fathers. Is manliness just strength and might? Or does it say, "I'm going to lay down my life to you"? On the surface, sacrifice can feel weak and powerless. But it's powerful. Christ may have looked weak and powerless on the cross during his moment of ultimate sacrifice, and yet that sacrifice remains the most powerful act ever seen.

It's another paradox. We are at our strongest when we lay down our lives, even in small ways, for our children—maybe especially in small ways. It's hard to do. But I guess that's why it's called a "sacrifice." If it were easy it wouldn't be a sacrifice.

—Jim Daly in The Good Dad

My Response: How willing am I to sacrifice my time in order to demonstrate my love for my kids? When do I find it most difficult to do so?

Thought to Apply: Love your children—and let them know you love them. Children who experience love find it far easier to believe God loves them.—Billy Graham (evangelist)

Adapted from The Good Dad by Jim Daly with Paul Asay. Copyright 2014 by James Daly. Used by permission of Zondervan.

Prayer for the Week
Heavenly Father, my children truly are gift s from you. Forgive me for those times I've neglected these precious gifts in my pursuit of other things. Help me to begin each day with a desire to be a good dad.

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Curt Schleicher

July 22, 2014  9:01am

i am willing to sacrifice my time by assisting my daughter in reconstructing her bed in her new room so she will have her room the way she desires it to be. When there are conflicts that impinge upon my wants and her needs. That's the whole idea behind sacrifice allowing my needs to be subservient to someone else's --- in this example, my daughter Lindy. In Jesus name, amen.

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Steve Pappas

July 22, 2014  6:45am

MOI- John 15:9-17; To be the example you are to us Lord. It was your sacrifice for us that showed your strength. That I would sacrifice for others. Remembering that is what you did. Not an easy task at times, I can be selfish and want what I want. But that I would remember that by sacrificing my will, I am showing your love, and those around me may turn to you and be saved.

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