I'm Proud of You

...and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”—Matthew 3:17

Two days ago a well-respected man and I had coffee. As the discussion continued, there was a moment where he was very pointed with me about the ministry I have been leading over the past five years. In a strong but gentle tone, he said, "I'm proud of you." Almost in shock, I asked him back, "You're proud of me?" To which he replied, "Yes, you!" Still, in disbelief, I began to tear up in public. I reached for my eyes with my thumb and index finger working to dry the tears that welled in my eyes quickly, but it was too hard to hold them back. I softly replied with a soft crack in my voice, "Thank you."

As I left the meeting, I reflected on why his words gripped me so powerfully. Was it the fact, that my fatherlessness over the last two decades was aching to hear words like this from a father? Or was my respect for him so great that his approval just surprised me? Or was I having a down day and therefore more emotionally sensitive? Or was it merely the fact that I hear those words so rarely? Well, I concluded it was probably all the above. And I have also concluded that those words are not only something we want to hear but need to hear. Notice that God extends these same words to his son, even though Jesus does not need them for fueling his performance—"Son, I love you, and I'm proud of you." As men, fathers, leaders, and husbands we need to hear these words, and extend them with power to others.

DO THIS: Tell someone, "I'm proud of you" today.

PRAYER: God, I know I may not deserve an "atta boy," but I am so glad to have you as my loving, caring, accepting dad.

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