All Pro Dad Men’s Study Week Three: Know Your Mind-Set


Last week I traveled to Honduras on a mission trip. Our group’s mission was to share God’s love and serve the Honduran families in the village where we were going by building concrete floors in their small homes and huts. We didn’t just head to a foreign country on a whim, though. We spent months planning out the logistics of the trip and we prepared our hearts and minds in prayer in advance of our boarding a plane to Honduras. We wanted to do everything that we could to ensure that our attitude and mind-set was right to allow us to be effective servants of God.

Likewise, we need to know what our mind-set should be as fathers so that we can stay focused on one of the main missions in our lives: loving and leading our families. As we discussed in the week 3 group training session, one of the greatest influences on our mind-set is the relationship that we had (or didn’t have) with our fathers. I asked Brian, our Director of School Programs here at All Pro Dad and father of two, to share about how his father impacted his mind-set. Here’s what he had to say:

My dad’s influence earlier in my life came through his actions and choices more than through his words, although I really didn’t have an appreciation of his influence at the time. As I have gotten older, I have had deeper conversations with my dad about the choices he made, and those talks have really cemented his influence on my mind-set as a father. For instance, my dad was always with my brother and me at the football and baseball fields growing up, most of the time as one of our coaches. As a kid, I kind of took that for granted. But as I have gotten older and become a father myself, I’ve come to appreciate how busy life can be and how difficult it can be to balance the demands of life, work and family. My dad chose to make family his priority, and that motivates me every day to make the same choice.

While I’ve tried to always make my family the top priority, I have experienced a fair amount of stress in trying to balance competing priorities in life. As I have grappled with those issues, I have had been able to talk with my dad about the important and meaningful choices he made and truly be reminded of how important those choices are. He has always demonstrated the importance of putting me and my brother first, but in our conversations I’ve come to truly understand and appreciate the sacrifices he made in business to spend that important time with us.

This has given me the mind-set that my family has to come first. I’ve realized that my eternal impact as a father is far more significant than any business success I might achieve, and I credit much of that mindset to the lessons I witnessed from my dad my entire life … lessons I have been blessed to talk about with my dad as I have continued to grow in my journey as a husband and father.

Brian’s dad gives us an awesome picture of what it looks like to have a fatherhood first mind-set. Though, as pointed out in the story above, this can be a stressful and overwhelming task when we think about how to go about prioritizing family and dealing with our careers and life. Thankfully, we know that if we lack wisdom in this fatherhood mission, all we have to do is ask God for wisdom and He promises that it will be given to us (James 1:5).

Those of you who are walking through this mission with us, what are your thoughts about week 3 of the All Pro Dad men’s study? Was your dad there for you growing up, or was he absent? How do you see this playing out in your life today? How are you working to have the mind-set to lead and love your family? Leave me your thoughts or questions below in the comments section.

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