I’m just a little boy, still too young to tie my own shoes or make my own breakfast. My days are filled with games, snacks, lots of hugs from Mom and lots of tickling from you Dad.
Now my life revolves around me and you and Mom. I still don’t know much about the world outside our house. I didn’t learn about responsibility, self-discipline, or sacrifice. I still haven’t had to find my place in the world.
But I think I’m very lucky because even though you don’t know it, you’ve already started to teach me everything I need to know to be a good man in today’s world.
See, I’m watching you, Dad, and I’m learning a lot.
I see you hold the door for mommy and treat her like she’s really special. (I think she’s also very special.) I see you make time for your own parents, siblings, and friends, no matter what else is going on in your life. I see you going to work every day, and Mom says you work really hard to take good care of us.
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And even if you have a job that you love, I can say that you love me and Mom more. You make time every day to fight me and take me for walks and bathe me at night. I hear you talk about trusting that God has a good plan for our family. I hear you pray before meals, and you tell me Jesus loves me.
You cheer very loudly for your sports teams, make a lot of silly faces and sounds, and do a lot of fun things with me, like build forts and take me out for ice cream.
You like to have fun, and so do I!
You are teaching me how to be kind and gentle, how to be patient, how to be strong and tough, how to be honest and how to take good care of the things I love, but especially the people I love.
You might think I’m just a little boy who can’t see beyond the toys in front of me, but I see everything, Dad. I see how you treat the people around you. I see how you react when things don’t go your way. I hear the kinds of words you say.
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Even when you don’t know, I’m learning a lot from you. And I love copying you! Because you’re my role model, daddy.
And I think I’m very lucky to be able to learn to be a man with a good man like you.