I firmly believe that the influence I have as a parent is the greatest influence I have as a man. Never in my life will influence come easier than it does with my children. It is impossible to over-estimate the importance of my role as a parent because parents are pivotal figures in the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual development of children.
One of the things my wife and I try to do as parents is something we describe as “bookending” our kids. We want to “bookend” their day with love, smiles, enjoyment, and a sense of security in our home. So, as best as we can, we try to be there every morning for them greeting them with smiles, sitting down to breakfast together, and sending them off in to their day knowing that they are loved by mom and dad. And, at night, we try to spend time with them before bed … talking, laughing, and reading … we pray over them, tuck them in, and try to send them off to bed knowing that mom and dad love them. So, we do our best to “bookend” their day.
As with every part of life, there are ups and downs with this. Some days it goes amazingly well … other days, not so much. As parents we always need to rest in the grace of God and remember that His grace enables us to continue on when we'd rather quit and engage when we'd rather walk away. But, again, influence will never come easier than it does with our kids and, as a dad, I want to leverage every bit of influence I have with my kids in as many ways as I possibly can. “Bookending” their day is one way to do that.