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Leadership and Vacations

imagesFrom an article by C.J. Mahaney

 

What a family looks like—what a family experiences on a vacation—is largely determined by the father’s attitude and leadership prior to and during the vacation. Some fathers charge into a vacation at a place like Disney World committed to visiting every venue, seeing every show, and experiencing every ride. Every moment and detail has been planned with military precision as the father leads his wife and children on the long-awaited mission. But by noon the first day, the family has spent most of the morning standing in long lines growing more sunburned by the minute. The children are tired, cranky, and hungry. And the father has been passing his time while standing in line reflecting on the serious chunk of his salary he invested in this forgettable experience. And he is not smiling.

 

Other fathers choose less trendy vacation spots. This is no Disney dad. No way! This father takes his family to the lake or the beach. There are no lines here. Here the days will pass slowly and predictably. And if he’s not careful and purposeful, this father can wrongly assume that location alone guarantees a wonderful and memorable vacation.

 

It’s possible for this father to view the family vacation as a peaceful and beautiful context where he can primarily rest and relax with little required of him. His wife and children desire his leadership during this time but rarely experience it. And they are not smiling.

 

Here’s what I’ve learned. The difference between forgettable vacations and unforgettable vacations is not the location or attractions. Nope. The difference between forgettable and unforgettable vacations is the father’s attitude and leadership. This makes all the difference.

 

C.J. writes 7 lessons in leadership on vacation in his full article:

1. A Servant Heart

2. A Tone-Setting Attitude

3. An Awareness of Indwelling Sin

4. Studying Your Family

5. Skillful Surprises

6. Intentionally Together

7. Gratefulness to God

 

Read C.J.’s full PDF article here.

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images It is here. September brings about the annual 6th grade Father Son St Louis Trip. I am joining 75 sixth graders and their dads for three days and two nights in St Louis. We will head to the Cardinals game, Six Flags, the Zoo and of course the Arch. It is tradition for all PDS Students in PK-5th grade to gather at the buses and wave to us as we leave. My two boys do it every year and are counting down the days until they can join me. I must say I can’t wait to be a dad on this trip and not just a chaplain. Something very neat occurred this year as we were leaving the parking lot. The 5th grade (my oldest son included) started the chant “one more year.” They chanted loud and proud as we pulled out. My brain started spinning. I love the fact that these guys can’t wait to spend a weekend with their dads having a blast. But why stop there. Don’t wait days, months or years for this trip or that trip. I am calling all dads to step up and BE INTENTIONAL NOW! Schedule that vacation, plan that day away, take them somewhere, anywhere and engage your son. Make a memory and enjoy the fact that God has entrusted a son or sons to you. You do not know what tomorrow holds. So while I spend time away from kids begging dads to make this trip memorable, go be intentional with your kids. Love them, pray for them and be intentional with them!

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