What is the most powerful word in the English language? Is it "honor," or "love," or "country?" Maybe it's "sacrifice." Stu Weber, who has written the book called Tender Warrior, says, "How about the word 'dad?'" Just walk through what you know about life. When it comes to power in a youngster's world, I'll put my money on the word "dad." As words go, "hope," "vision," and "sacrifice" don't mean a whole lot to little ones, but the power of the word "dad" reaches far beyond a youngster's childhood. In fact, it spans generations.
There are two ways to recognize power. One is to see it at work. The other is to measure what happens when it is gone. Either way, the word "dad" is pretty potent. Present or absent, positive or negative, the power of the father is incredible.
In Ramsey County, Minnesota, ninth and tenth graders were interviewed recently about their dads. They were asked this question: "What comes to mind when you think of the word 'dad?'" Answers came immediately from both ends of the spectrum. One end of the spectrum said, "I think of the word 'jerk.'" Others thought of the words "angry," "mad," and "absent." On the other hand, some of the young people said, "I think of 'wholeness,' 'kindness,' 'security,' 'safety.'"
"Dad" is an immensely powerful word. The father leaves an indelible mark on the life of the soul, the life of children and grandchildren. It may be damaging; it may be enabling; it might be powerful. But it is incredible that this most powerful human position is conferred upon men who are fathers.
If you were a piece of paper held up to the light, we would see a watermark on your soul that has the name of your dad on it. Listen to T. Berry Brazelton, former chief of child development at Children's ...
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