Manhood, Courage, and Adventure
We need to pray bigger dreams, we need to live more adventurously and I think the fact that we sometimes don't communicate a lot to our families about what we believe about God, unfortunately, and that's not to shame anybody out there, but I think people miss out on a great adventure when they don't live adventurous.
Hey guys. Welcome back to dad. Awesome. You just heard a clip from Vince Miller and I'll introduce him in just a moment here, but this is episode 31 and I'm so thankful for each of you joining us. My name is Jeff Zog and my voice is just a little bit deeper than usual. It's that summer cold, that summer, like raspy sounding, and I'm just going to own it and rock with the deep voice today. So thanks for your patience, but he, the heart and the prayer behind a dad awesome is that we pray that we would just be a community of men who were not seeking to be perfect, not seeking to be the awesome ideal dad, but we're simply loving and leading our kids towards a God who is awesome. So that's our prayer. Thank you for joining us. If this podcast has been helpful to you or this current episode or other episodes or our midweek data ideas, the shorter version, if any of this has been helpful, if you wouldn't mind for this, just send a text message or an email to a friend, send them to send them to dad.
Awesome.org. That's where all the resources are. We would be super grateful for your support in sharing on social media at instagram or facebook or sending that message, so thanks for sharing the love Vince Miller. I've been encouraged for years now. People have been like, man, you need to meet Vince. He's an awesome guy. The ministry resolute I've heard about for a long time and in finally I just reached out and I was like, Vince, I would love to meet you. I'd love to connect more and I would love if you'd be willing for me to interview you for this podcast for the dad, awesome podcast, and right away he shot back, was willing to meet up and I'm just so excited for this conversation in my prayers that it would inspire you. Like it inspired me in my role as a dad soap. Let's jump right to Vince Miller introducing himself.
Yeah. So, uh, just an overall view. It'd be. So today I'm a speaker, author, mentor. Demand is what I say to guys obviously founded the ministry called resolute a family is super energetic right now to be quite honest. I mean I've got a 20 year old, a 17 year old and a 14 year old, so girl, boy, boy. So we're just drinking from a fire hose as it relates to a kid's activities. Looking at colleges, spending money on all kinds of things. I mean we got four cars in the driveway right now. We're about to have five and I feel like I'm about to be broke from all the insurance money we give to this guy. That's my insurance guy. I mean, it's crazy, so I'm having a good time a family wise, marriage wise, ministry wise. It's just been incredible. I've, I've always had passion around mentorship, right?
So I've worked in ministry about 26 years now and, and I just have an undying passion for mentorship, but I also have this incredible heart for men and the Hartford and of course comes from some of my story. I've obviously looked for men to invest in my life, had a hard time finding it, and so I built a ministry that solves the problem that I had so many men out there looking for mentorship. They're looking for dads, so to speak, kind of like you're talking about today, right? Dads, to kind of mentor them through the challenges of life. So that's why resolute exists. We exist to disciple and development to lead and so I provide men with all kinds of resources, whether it be daily devotionals, audio podcast, a small group materials, a devotional materials that a guy can use on his own books to read, et Cetera, et cetera.
I want to empower a guy to lead in his life. My Dad abandoned me when I was a kid, about two and a half and of course my mom raised me for some of those young kid years. She got remarried, divorced again, and uh, finally Kinda gave up on raising me and when I was about 15 or so I moved in with my grandfather and grandmother. Now, you know, they were, they were older. Um, my grandfather was still a robust kinda husky athletic guy, you know, he was a navy veteran and loved the guy he was, he was all kinds of cool though. But the one thing that was unique about him was he was a Christian and, and my mom was, I would call her an agnostic at best. My father was an atheist and so we didn't even use the name of God in our house, believe it or not, not even as a curse word.
Seriously. I wasn't allowed to use the name of God in our house. And then I moved in with my grandfather who can't stop talking about God. And so now I'm having, this is healthy, I would say youth experience and because of his influence between the ages of 15 to 20, I finally made a profession of faith at 20 and uh, unfortunately lost him at 21 to cancer, which is, I know something that you're challenged with right now as well. And I mean, that was a tragic moment. But after my grandfather was gone, I realized that I had this void and it was a man void, a, I was longing for someone to be dead to me, to mentor me. And uh, for about 20 years I sought men to mentor me and could never find anybody to do it. And I thought it was strange, right?
We, we as men, look for model men to point us in the direct us the way. And that's the only way we learn is by other people passing on the wisdom they have. It's very biblical, by the way, right? It's called discipleship mentorship call. Whatever you want doesn't really matter. But, uh, out of this pain of seeking out people to mentor me and not finding it, that's where I discovered my call and my passion, my passion is to see men mentor and I want every man that ever wants it to have either the tools or the opportunity to be mentored so he can become more like Jesus Christ. And I have experienced some of those similar challenges with, with finding a mentor that fits in. And I know that we were talking off mic before we sat down today about how even your latest book, this idea of 30 virtues that build a man is a tool that really comes from that place of passion of could you help in a bite size like that?
You can get your arms around this in a few moments. Spark conversations between two men that could even help a mentor relationship. So that, I mean, obviously that's one resource, but what would you say are some of your top tips to help in this case? Dad's find a mentor or find a, uh, it could also be tips to finding brotherhood because that, which is also very valuable. But what are some of those tips to get us guys out of just the Rut of survival mode into, no, I want to grow and I want to do it through relationship. Yeah, that's a. that's a great question. So maybe I could tell this short little snippet for my life, so I will never forget the moment that my daughter graduated high school. Okay. This is a frightening moment for men and if you. I know some of these guys out there listening, don't they have a little kid so it's the long way off, but there will be a moment when you're dropping your daughter off at college for the very first time.
We're all of a sudden you have guilt and regret just smacks you across the face. Maybe it's a slight kick to the growing too, right? But you feel this like, did I do enough? Did I mentor, did I disciple? Et Cetera, et Cetera, et cetera. And I've reflected on that for almost a year. I mean it just plagued me and then I basically reduced fathering and mentoring down to two very simple ideas. The first one is this, tip number one would be look being a great mentor to anybody, whether it be your daughter, another man or building brotherhood, and your life has a lot to do with living in the character of Jesus Christ. Right on a daily basis. If I am the right man right now, right then I will always be influencing other people the right way. I will be the right mentor and I will be the right med team.
The other part is really point number two would be make every teachable moment an available moment to teach something. A principle about God, and I was pretty good about that with my kids, especially when they were living underneath my my home before they were starting to graduate college. I. I just took the most available moment to teach them and to impart to them godly principles in that moment. It's not, we don't have to figure out path from a to Z, right? We don't have to disqualify ourselves around actually doing it or being a mentee. We can just dive in by being a man of character and then number two, making these available moments, teachable moments, and I think that's all we need to remember his dads, if we can remember those two things, we will all be great dads and great mentors. I hope that all three of my kids, regardless of what they choose to do kind what their God given Dna, their talents or gifts, whatever it might be, would be that in every moment they live in godly character.
I mean, I, I pray for their virtue, for the attributes of who they are to shine through, like in the challenges of life or when they run into an obstacle or they face a moment that's difficult, that maybe they would come to me and we'd find ways to live out of that moment in godly character. If they did that for their whole life, I would feel like the most successful that. And you know what, they're going to fail at it just like you and I have. Right? And then, uh, hopefully I'm there to pick them up and to demonstrate what that looks like. But that's my dream for is that for the rest of their life, they would honor God from the inside out. And the reason I love that question is I think it helps all of us as, as dads and many of us, a step younger dads, we got little littler kids and your kids start to ask that same question and pray about what is my big prayer, what are my dreams for my kids?
So. So thanks. That's helpful. It's very helpful. Let's talk about having fun with our kids for a moment. So I know that you, you guys get it on the water together. You enjoy on the lake boating. I know you work out with your, you show me one picture of you guys walking out together. Tell me some of the ways that you laugh together. Play together, connect with your kids. This is, this is fun, but I, I know you'll appreciate those maybe, but. So we're a very athletic family so we actually all do crossfit together. Is that crazy or what? I know it sounds kind of cool. It's amazing. Yeah. But we actually, I'm across that athlete and so I compete and uh, but it's been so much fun because I'm going to confess this to you is actually my wife that got me into crossfit.
Right? That's amazing. And then amazing. And she's, she's a great athlete. A also are my kids. My kids are all great athletes, but it, it's something that we do that's fun together. So another thing we do that's fun together as we love to get out in the lake together. And the reason why we like to go out in the lake is because we have such beautiful lakes in Minnesota of course. But you know what happens when you get on a lake, you're trapped in a boat for your phone because you don't really want your phone to go zipping over this. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And they took their phones away and every once in a while I'll look down at it, but you know what? Kids are trapped. And I found that when our kids were younger, we could trap them at the table, but as they get older and become teenagers, you can't trap them the way that you get them trapped into a relationship with you as you put them out on a boat where they can't get off of it.
It's great. I love to do that kind of stuff with my kids. Was there a moment, and this could be a few years ago or could go back and, you know, a decade ago when the kids were younger, a moment for you and your wife that you look back on and you're like, that was a breakthrough moment. It altered, it. Change the trajectory of our parenting, the priorities of our parenting. Sometimes it's a hurtful, like a hard moment that you made it through. Or a a moment where a mentor maybe gave you some wisdom and it helped change how you were walking through your roles at dad. Uh, can you think of a moment you'd be willing to share with us? Yeah. You know, uh, I'll, I'll share with you maybe one that happened. It's just a few years back, but we, you know, we have, we have three kids. I'm the middle child who's name is grant turned 15, got his permit and uh, two days later we were driving up to duluth, which is a, you know, a couple of hours north, right.
And we had my daughter and my youngest son, we had her boyfriend's, my daughter's boyfriend's family. We're all driving up. We left the middle child at home with a brand new driver's permit, not a license, a permit. Uh, he, uh, gets in the truck, my truck, um, and it's brand new. It's Ford F150 supercrew jumps in. It decides to take it out for a joy ride with a couple of friends going up to culver's, drives it up to culver's, drives it back home, which is only a few miles away. Total. Said he hits a telephone pole, totals of the truck. And, uh, this was really a pivotal moment, not only for us in relationship with grant, but the entire family, uh, for a couple of reasons. Uh, number one, uh, you can't imagine a more financially devastating decision than having an unlicensed uninsured driver in your home.
The steal the car and total it brand new. So financially this was devastating for us because we're looking at about a $50,000 vehicle and they had to work on these telephone poles for two days. So that's another 20 to $30,000 of labor and all kinds of stuff that I didn't know that I had to pay for it. Right? We got real. It got real really quick. But I want to tell you that moment, um, and how I handled it was so important as a father. I'm so glad I had two and a half hours to drive home to think about how I was going to handle that. And uh, the way that I handled it changed. I think the entire makeup of our family. Even my son who is now 17 today will tell you that, that, how we handled that as a family and what happened, I do want you to know that miraculously the insurance company paid for everything.
I know I'm really thankful for that, but it's a miracle because I want you to know that I had totaled my truck a year before in an accident and I was sitting in court for that lawsuit when they called and agreed to pay the entire bill for the other one. They were suing me for $2,000 of medical bills on the other previous accident. I mean, that's like a godsend moment. Right? So this changed not only how we viewed possessions, but how we viewed our son, how we view this moment, how we parented the other kid. The kid saw us respond to it. It was a revolutionary moment. There's a lot of details to it, but I just want you to know that that moment how I responded as a father and as a man made a difference and I'm so glad that I didn't be raped my son or yell at him.
I didn't raise my voice one bit. I just said to him, son, I value more than this car, but the choice that you made led to a lot of subsequent choices that we have to make as a family. And I want you to know that's how sin works. It creates suffering for other people when they don't deserve it. And boy, did he learn a lesson and he'll tell you, he could sit in here today and tell you, it was probably one of my finer moments as a father. And I would say it was one of our finer moments. His family.
Yeah. You know, I know one thing that you lead by example and doing was walking, uh, chasing this dream of launching resolute a dream of passion on your hearts during a season that didn't make sense in the world's eyes to walk away from a steady salary. Um, you know, a great upward into the right trajectory of your leadership and your resume, right? To walk away and say, I'm going to start something and take a massive risk. And I know you said your wife was truly behind you and with you in this, in this, but to do it in that season of parenting love for you to reflect for a moment for our listeners about, you know, the dad who is in a career that they're realizing the passion level is going down or that they're just stalled out, but they feel stuck because of financial responsibilities. How W, what would you share from reflecting on your experience and on just this drive towards. We as men need to be racing towards a passion like were designed to take ground, not to stall out to any, any reflections you'd be willing to share on that topic? Yeah,
absolutely. I, you know, I was of course 43 when I was starting to transition into like my calling and you know, I felt like I was doing my calling for awhile, but I think men have three kind of transitions in the monetary part of their life. They have, first off, they have their job, which is where they learn skills and then typically they move into a career. It's like where they're starting to kind of use their talents to advance themselves a little bit and then we have this last kind of calling is what I call it. So we moved from job to career to calling and I think some men never make that transition from not just job to career but career to calling because I think they're scared to be quite honest. And I think of men were really honest with themselves. They are scared.
They're scared because we like security, we like safety, we like to provide for our family and we get caught into the financial rat race. Right? So when my kids saw me make that transition at 43 when they were still teens living in the home, I mean this is a risky time for us to venture into a nonprofit. That means we don't make money, right? A nonprofit ministry as the sole breadwinner for the home. But my wife pushed me to do it and we did it and my kids got to see me live in the greatest adventure of my whole life. I am more happy today because not only does my career and my calling align, they are the same things and I'm 47 today, but I would say to the guys out there that are thinking about this in regards to their family and their career and their calling and what that looks like into the future is man, what are you waiting for?
Right. I think we need to pray bigger dreams. We need to live more adventurously and I think the fact that we sometimes don't communicates a lot to our families about what we believe about God unfortunately. And that's not to shame anybody out there, but I think people miss out on a great adventure when they don't live adventurously that perspective of someone who's done it and now it's like, I cannot imagine staying the course of safety because you've lived the adventure. Well, yeah. And you know, guys asked me all the time, how could you do that when you're 43 with a family? Like how were you able to do it? They want to understand financially how is able to do it and I have to go back and tell them I couldn't give you a business plan that could prove out my concept. I just trusted in God and, and they look at me and they're just like, oh, I'd love to be you.
But I think deep in their hearts they really want to do things like that. And I think that's where really manhood is born, is in the adventure of getting out of the boat like Peter did. And He. Why was he the, he was the only one who ever walked on water besides Jesus. Why was the only the only one? Because he was willing to take a risk that no one else was willing to take. And I think men miss out on this far too often. Let's talk for a moment about rhythms of just disciplines that help keep the most important things the most important. So it could be a rhythms of, of fitness, of staying in shape to stay healthy. It could be rhythms of, uh, in, in your Bible, so time in the word or rhythms have date nights with whatever rhythms that you think might, um, that you have found, whether it's a younger season when kids were a little younger or today with, with high schoolers or teenagers.
Any rhythms that you'd shared that have been helpful for you? Yeah, absolutely. So I have this thing called my. I called my eight f framework. I'm looking at it right now, my phone, I'm just going to read it to you. It's called faith family. Then I jumped to friends, fitness, food, fun, finances, and future. So I have these eight like pieces of framework that are all related to the words that begin with F, right? No joke. I'm very faithful to this. So it's a goal setting pyramid. So I have two to three goals around each one. So let's just take fun. Here's my goal around fun adventure. Do one adventurous thing each month. It's a monthly goal, very tangible, very tangible monthly. Go, um, I could jump to something else here. So a fitness. I'm going to run each week. Yeah. Every week I'm going to run one time.
It could be three miles, it could be five miles, could be seven, it doesn't really matter. I just have to run each week and then I can check that thing off. But this is how I create rhythms that are meaningful to me. You know, some guys let life happen to me. I don't let life happen to me. I make life happen by setting goals and rhythms and the fun part about it is I can look back at this at the end of the year and I can look at my eight apps and I can go, did I really accomplish it? So one of the rhythms I have in guys, I'm not going to say all the guys out there need to do this, but I write a men's daily, Debo for resolute. But guess who? The first people I send that to every day is my family. I text my family everyday.
I call it the dad's daily Devos, so triple d, but I have men's daily depot. I just basically copy and paste it for my family and make it for my family. So I write about 300 words to my family every day on a text. Yeah. And I love it. It's a spiritual discipline that I give it to them and it's good for me and it's good for them and they read it sometimes. Sometimes they don't. Right. But it doesn't matter. I'm doing a discipline that spiritually encourages my family. Yeah. And simplifying, even in we'll include in the show notes. Those are all the apps. I'll probably forget them somewhat. Someone's driving while this include those as a framework though, because it's so helpful to not just say, well, this is something I hope for, but this is what it's working. You're doing this rhythm of tangible within each of those categories.
So yeah. Thanks for sharing. That's really helpful. Let's go to mistakes for a second. A mistake, and we call this dad. Awesome. This podcast is dad. Awesome. Very, and I, I know I repeat this all the time, but maybe there a new listener this week. Dad, awesome exists to help us as dads intentionally love and lead our kids towards a God who is awesome. So we do not have to be awesome. So we have to ask the mistake question to prove that you're not an awesome dad. What have you learned from just like, hey man, this is a mistake that I made and that I would just really work towards not repeating in, in my role as a data? Yeah, absolutely. So this is bottom line and this took me years to figure out this. Um, but I, I think men more often than not privately shame and disqualify themselves.
I think the inner voice of our own guilt and regret and fears is screaming at us all the time. And I think most men don't learn to understand that voice and a turn, that stinking thing off. Um, you know, when I read Ephesians one, I discover that I'm adopted, I'm loved and forgiven. I'm full of grace and mercy. I'm, I'm, I'm a part of something that's reconciled, that's worth loving. And I think that the private voices of shame that come from my own personal dialogue or some of the loudest voices I listened to, and I think men need to find ways to silence those voices. And not just turn it off with the positive of power, a positive of, uh, uh, the power of positive thinking, right? We're talking about living out the identity of Christ. And so I've got to turn off these private voices of shame and regret that I have about the mistakes that I've made is whether it be a father, a husband, I'm a, whether it be actual things that I've fallen down on in my responsibility as a man.
I got to turn off those voices and I got to turn on the reality that I live in a new and redeemed identity in Jesus Christ. And I've got to repeat positive things about who I in him. I think Satan is looking to diminish men with these private voices with dads that don't feel like they've done a good job. Husbands that privately Shaman beat themselves up, right? And men that maybe make mistakes in their leadership. Man, if we could turn those voices off, we're dealing with them privately and no one knows about them. And there's guys that are having this dialogue as they drive in their car right now with themselves. I'm not a great dad, I'm not a great dad. I'm not as great as Vincent, Jeff, whatever, whatever. We're all fallen, broken people. I've screwed things up, all screwed things up all the time in my life, but it doesn't mean that I have to allow those voices to run my life.
I am a lead by a new leader, Jesus Christ, and he leads my life down a path that is much different, right? Right. His plan is for us to thrive, to live this life, the fullness of life, right? And the devil is going to just keep stealing, killing, keep destroying John Ten, 10. I mean it's classic, but it's such easy framework, right? Those voices, shame stuff, the, all those lies. It's a lie. He's a liar. He's still stealing our emotions. He stealing and he's getting guys off track from this, this sweet adventure. I love that you talk about like, no, there's an adventure for you, so thanks for. Yeah, thanks for your vulnerability with the fact that you lived. That was a mistake. I still have those voices, man. Like every once in a while when an argument goes sour at home with the wife, right? I shamed myself for that man.
I could have handled that better. Yeah. I could have handled it better. Yes. But I'm also redeemed and loved in Jesus Christ. When we think about resources, the dads listening that uh, you know, have not read every book that we recommend, but just a little snippet about resources that you'd recommend and we know, and this is so fun, that resolute your ministry is the largest men's curriculum, men's resources to help Christian men in their pursuit of the Lord. You got, you guys have an amazing platform. All these videos, all these books and devotionals and your daily devotional. So I won't let you recommend your own. I'll recommend that. Yeah. Any, any other though? Top one or two resources for a Christian Dad's? Yeah. You know, I think when kids are younger, resource would be things like music and singing. I used to grab my guitar, I saw yours and your office.
I used to grab my guitar and just seeing my kids. That's a great resource by singing worship. I also think just the regular activity of praying over them and, and being methodical about it. Um, as kids get older, I think that you're going to have to have meaningful conversations. So dialogues about major and important topics, right? Sex, finances, relationship reconciliation, how, how to, how to deal with pressures in life. Like those are the kinds of things that I did. And then I think finally, I think this is huge and we shouldn't undermine this. Dragging our kids to church kicking and screaming is, is a good thing. Yeah. Even when church doesn't feel all that great, right? That we have a positive attitude about it. We're bringing our kids with us, we're encouraging them to come. We're encouraging them to build relationships, to think about their spiritual future.
I think those are all great resources, so whether it be worship, music, it'd be conversations, it'd be the church itself. I think they just need to dig in and it's not just about one resource. I think it's about that, that evolution of resources and a man and a father's life. Yeah. And Initiative, right? Yeah. Just taking the initiative saying, yeah, all those areas, and then as we enter your vince, again, thank you for joining us. Really grateful for you. Taking time to sit down and share with our listeners. Parting words though, if you, if you thinking about, man, I'm, I'm a writing in my, a boat across the lake, you know, I'm out with a group of young dads. What would you share is just kind of parting words with these dads to encourage but also to speak some life to a stats. Yeah. I think, you know, I think being a dad is a lonely job just as much as being a mother is right.
Um, I think it's a lonely because of all of our wounds and I think dads out there listening today, if they haven't gotten in touch with the wounds that they've experienced as a child from their own father, whether he was great or not, uh, you're missing out on the deep healing that you need to be a great dad, period. And we all have wounds. Um, we should not just diminish our dad's though, right? We should find ways to elevate them. And Love them for who they were and what God showed us through that. So there's, there's the great resource. It's not just about the wounds, but it's about how father God in his sovereignty has said to us this phrase, this is my son in whom I am well pleased. If we know those words, we know perfect and beautiful handling. So no those words guys.
Well that was my conversation with Vince Miller. Thank you so much for joining us for episode 31 and let me add and just reiterate for just a quick moment the, the last point about wounds and that each of us as dads, we have wounds. It's real. Some of those wounds come from a dad figure, a person in our life that it was our dad or someone who played that dad role and in God's heart is that we as dads would not carry that forward, that we wouldn't take that baggage and that hurts and, and carry it forward, but that we would receive forgiveness, that we would receive healing. And, and it's a painful process, but it's such a worth it process. It's so worth it to take time in prayer, to take time with Christian brotherhood, to take time with mentors, to actually pray through a process of forgiveness so that we can walk in freedom and in peace, and we can walk with boldness in our role as dads not not carrying forward the hurt that was done to us.
So that's God's heart. You again, you are loved. God is well pleased in you. Those same words that God spoke to to Jesus, he speaks to us as his sons. He God is our heavenly father. So, so thank you for walking out this journey. Thank you for being intentional dads. As always, we're thankful for you joining us for episode 31 and thanks for sharing this episode with others who might find it helpful, all of the resources and and follow up information to get connected with resolute ministry and Vince Miller is available at [inaudible] dot org or in the show notes on your podcast app or in the email that you received with this link. So thanks again for joining us. And an amazing. Yeah.