1) Never leave home without a diaper… (Yes, I have done this.)
2) Don’t try to bribe your kids with sugary treats right before bedtime.
3) Never let your kid watch Caillou (If you’re a parent who has experienced this, you’ll know what I mean)
4) Don’t try to bribe your kids with sugary treats right when they wake up
(Yes, I’ve done both.)
5)Teach your kids what “daddy says” about them.

I’ve finished a book, a while ago by Steven Furtick, called Greater. In it, he explains the importance of speaking life and identity into his children. For example, he told one of his children that he (the kid) was a genius. This plan, however, backfired when his son began to tell everyone that he was a genius. Furtick then learned to teach his children to explain it like this:

“My daddy says I’m a genius.” This simple change in wording implies that the child has a solid identity because his dad says so, rather than leaning on any other source. This hit home for me as I realize the power of my words toward my own children. When I tell my eight-year-old son that he’s the best basketball player in the world, his reply is always the same, “Yeah… I am.” He truly believes in the words I’m speaking into his life.

So, parents, dads, we have a unique ability with our words to shape our children. Let’s speak not to their ability, but to their character. Let me give you an example: Your child worked really hard on a picture, and they colored inside the lines (winning!) Instead of only commenting on their performance (“Wow, you made such a good picture!”) talk about how proud you are of their hard work. Another example: Your child scored the winning goal in their soccer game. Let them know that you saw the goal and you are so excited, but, you also saw them help someone up from the other team. Remind them how you love their heart that cares for people.

Now let’s expand this one more level. What will happen if I start saying, “Kennan, you’re the best prayer warrior in the world.” His response? “Yeah… I am.” So parents let’s also remind our children of what their heavenly Father says about them. If you are not sure how, here is a great place to start. God says… I am an overcomer (1 John 5:4), that I have the mind of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16), and that I was created in God’s image (Gen. 1:27).

If “my daddy says” that I am, then it must be so.