Courageous movie trailerThat is what we need to do as Manly Men. We need to be willing to do the hard as well as the simple things with and for our children. We need to do better at sharing the duties of parenting with our wife. As we do this we will feel a greater part of our children's lives and see and feel the benefits of becoming a father.
Elder Packer tells us some of the benefit of being more involved: "To you who are young, this experience of loving someone more than you love yourself can come, insofar as I know, only through the exercise of the power of creation. Through it you become really Christian." (Boyd K. Packer address to CES personnel at BYU, 15 July 1958) I understand that to mean not just the act of procreation, but inclusive of the daily actions of protecting, raising, teaching, and loving that child is what helps us "become really Christian".
Click here if you want to see a bunch of statistics that help tell the story of how important a father can be in a child's life. The truth is that father's are as indispensable as are mothers. Our society has grown away from that belief but the truth, as usual, hasn't changed.
Naturally we can't change nor help and protect every child. We can however do what is needed with our own children. Those of you who haven't had any children yet need to commit yourself to this. It will not be easy nor convenient, but if you put your priorities in a more Godly order then you will recognize that your "creations" need the same attention and caring and preparing and teaching and so forth that our God gives to us. In my mind, being a father and parent in general, is training to help us be more like our Heavenly Father. So while our children need us, in reality we need them too.
As we recognize things that our children need to be taught, we find that we have a greater desire to be that good example too them. Now, all of a sudden, when you have that child in your arms and in your life you have stronger reasons to be the person you always knew you could be and wanted to be. With that child everything is multiplied because your example will now last generations and not just die with you. Tens and hundreds, even thousands of lives will be blessed, or cursed by your choices
Here's some beginning things to teach your children from David O' McKay: "We should ...awaken in the minds of the youth a realization that to be honest, to be dependable, to be a loyal citizen of the country, to be true to the standards of the gospel are the noblest ideals of life" (David O. McKay, Gospel Ideals, p. 264).