Filling Daddy’s Shoes

28 Dec

I am still amazed each time I hear one of my boys call out my name – Dad. This word serve as a constant reminder of the gift that God has given me to be a father. Then one unforgettable Saturday morning, I was reminded of the responsibility that comes with that gift.
I had just finished shaving in the bathroom when I heard a disturbance from downstairs. I went to the top of the staircase, and saw my oldest son (who was only 18-months-old) sanding at the bottom of the steps. Josiah had opened the closet door and had pulled out my old brown dress shoes. He had climbed up to the second step, and sat down. He began to reach for my shoes laying on the floor, but his arms were too short to reach them. Resolved to accomplish his task, he reached over and over again. As his frustration built, he began to grunt under the strain of his efforts. picture with boys
I then asked myself, “Why did he climb to the second step?” He could have reached the shoes from the first step, and then it dawned on me. He sat on that step because that is where I sit every morning before leaving for work. Tears welled up in my eyes from watching his struggle to imitate me. His frustration built, but he would not give up. Putting on shoes is such a routine task to me, but to him it meant everything.
It frightens me to know that Josiah’s desire to imitate goes far beyond the simple act of putting on shoes. The way he talks, walks, works, spends money, and has fun will be affected by my leadership. The way he interacts with other people and with his God will be formed as he imitates the behavior that he sees in our home. His desire to please will not end at adolescence. I am over forty-years-old, and the person that I still try to emulate and please is my father. My ears ache to hear the words, I am proud of you. My life reflects a passion to fill his shoes.
Americans pay millions of dollars each year for conferences, and education that will make them better leaders in the workplace. Yet rarely in today’s world will you hear anything about improving your leadership in the home. Let us remember that the largest leadership vacuum today is not in Wall Street, Hollywood, or the religious community.

A leadership vacuum exists within our homes.
It is a gap that God is calling fathers and mothers to fill for the sake of the next generation – a gap in your family that can only be filled by you.

So put aside the seemingly urgent.  Turn off the media, in order to focus on what really matters.

David - Prof 2Dr. G. David Boyd is the Managing Director of EA Resources – a non profit designed to equip parents and churches to minister to the needs of emerging adults.  If he can help your community, contact him at

One Response to “Filling Daddy’s Shoes”

  1. Melinda Taylor December 29, 2017 at 08:15 #

    Dear Dave, you hit that right on the head and the same goes for daughters. Fathers are important. My dad left when I was four years old and I remember waiting for him to come home all my adolescent life. No child should have to go through that. Yes, the values that you learn at home from your Dad is most important to both boys and girls. Thank you for writing this Dad’s are important..

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