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  • Writer's pictureJohn Nolan


Updated: Jun 7

Each generation can either reject the ways of their forefathers or embrace them. As a father, we need to look carefully at the examples we have personally experienced in life and those presented to us before we choose the best available option for us and our family. Developing a parenting plan based on positive parenting styles is not always easy.

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Wisdom is available if we have a heart that seeks it

We live in a world where we have tremendous access to information and teaching on any number of subjects, so acquiring knowledge is less of a challenge now than it was a generation ago. It is however important that we as fathers make the right choices from all the information provided and know how to make a wise selection. With such an abundance of information available to each of us, we often find opposing views presented, how then should we choose the fathering style that will help our individual family?

I have always found the most trustworthy way for selecting between opposing views is to look at the end results of following a certain style of teaching. If you found an unidentified seed and planted it in good soil and watered and fertilised it regularly then eventually you would have a fully-grown plant or tree, and you would know what type of plant it was. After the tree matured and produced fruit you could taste whether it was a quality tree producing good fruit or an inferior one leaving a bitter taste in your mouth.

The same principle can be applied to our selection of teachings and information on parenting and fatherhood. We should look at the lives of those who have followed a teaching and then at their relationship to their own children and also at their children’s lives, then we can easily gauge whether or not that particular teaching has borne good fruit or not. If we can find an example whose fathering style has produced outstanding children and a deep and abiding closeness with them even into their adulthood, then I believe we have found a fathering style worth emulating.

The good thing about choosing a fathering style for our family is that we don’t have to re-invent the wheel ourselves, there are some excellent examples available for those with a desire to learn and we can stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us.

Fathers can make intelligent and wise decisions in many areas of life by realising that “by their fruits you shall know them”. Once we have found a fathering example with good fruit on the tree and apply it to our lives and family then we can launch from there into a wonderful future with our loved ones.


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