Imitating Daddy

Apr 23, 2013 by



When my oldest brother was little, and was the only child at the time, our mom was looking all over for his shoes as they were about to leave the house. As usual, when it is time to leave, and we cannot find something, the intensity increases for the hunt to find it and get going. Mom was frustrated, not so much with my brother, but that she could not locate his shoes. She now had our dad included in the hunt…not sure what good that did as we know men have trouble finding things right in front of us. They continued to search until my dad, in haste, went to put on a pair of shoes he had left by the back door. As he tried to put his foot in the shoe, there was something smaller that was blocking his foot. You guessed it. There inside our dad’s shoes were my brother’s shoes. When asked why he had done that, he responded with, “I want to be just like daddy.”

Recently on a driving range, I saw a father and son swinging golf clubs. The little guy was trying to hit the ball just like dad.

The story is told that Phil Mickelson, professional golfer, imitated his dad’s golf swing like in a mirror. His dad told him to face him and watch his swing then imitate it. That is why Phil is left-handed when he plays golf. Understand he is right-handed in everything else he does.

We, as parents, should be examples for our children to follow. We need to be the example of what we desire in them. The old adage of “Do as I say, not as I do” seems so old and outdated. Many of us agree that it should be that way, BUT how often do we not practice this. But we often choose to live a life that is not always one that we want them to emulate. In our parenting book we discuss practical ways to model for our children those values we are attempting to instill. We cannot simply teach, but we must model.

Jerolyn has a plaque hanging on her wall that says tongue-in-cheek, “If you can’t be a good example, then you’ll just have be a horrible warning.” (Catherine Aird) Which are you?

Our children so often desire to be like us. How can we be the best person to emulate?

  1. What do we want our children to imitate or emulate from us?
  2. What values are we teaching? What modeling are we doing? For those of us who are people of faith, we will be familiar with a writer named Paul. He says, “… follow my example as I follow the example of Christ.” He lived it out and showed people what to follow.
  3. How do we want our children to follow us, to imitate our actions and behaviors, as well as, our words?


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