Why American fathers need to reject ‘3 damaging lies’ in today’s culture, says pastor

Why American fathers need to reject ‘3 damaging lies’ in today’s culture, says pastor

Ahead of Father’s Day on June 16, a faith leader on the West Coast shared “three damaging lies” he believes American dads are being told, either directly or indirectly, in today’s culture – and why fathers need to reject these untruths in order to do the best job possible in raising their children.

“Many dads are hardworking, fun, kind and intelligent,” said Pastor Jesse Bradley of Grace Community Church in Auburn, Washington.

Yet some of the “damaging lies” that are circulating today about fatherhood, he said, “are deceptive and difficult to identify. They are sneaky, strong and simple.”

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Once unearthed, though, “they can be thrown away,” Bradley said.

He told Fox News Digital, “Replacing lies with truth is powerful.” With faith in God, “dads can be set free from the mental traps that all too easily can entangle people.” 

With just a week to go before Father’s Day, he shared three lies that he believes “need to be removed from the souls of fathers” in order for dads to be the best parents they possibly can be for the well-being of their children.

Bradley said a “false message of defeat can be debilitating” for fathers. 

“It echoes with every failure and mistake… It is too heavy a burden” to carry.

Men who had dads who were “absent, abusive or aloof,” he said, may still carry scars from those experiences and perhaps are “unintentionally living them out in their own lives.”

Bradley, himself a husband and father of four children, said, “God is a healer and close to the brokenhearted. God is a Father to the fatherless. You have a heavenly Father who is always faithful and good – so receive His love that endures forever.”

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For fathers who may be struggling in their roles, he said, “God will bring other men into your life whom you can learn from and who will fill some of the ‘dad void’ you may have endured. Your past experiences in life don’t define you.”

So, “let the negative pieces motivate you to become very different,” he advised. 

“Your story is not over. The truth is, you can be the dad you never had.” 

Many men today are tempted or encouraged to “go solo – which initially can seem appealing,” said Bradley.

In a chaotic culture, “independence appears to be less complicated and includes less drama. Retreating to the ‘man cave’ can give some desired shelter from the storm,” he said.

The Christian pastor said the problem with this thinking is that “we are not made for isolation. We all need God and other people.” 

The lie here, he said, “is that we’re self-sufficient and that we can control our lives better if no one is near us or around us. We indulge in entertainment and hobbies as a refuge. Or work becomes our escape. Life becomes shallow.”

In his view, it’s “common in a fast-paced and challenging culture to wander from God, drift from your spouse, have too much distance from your children – and not have many close friends.”

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Said Bradley, “No dad wants the legacy of being distant. Relationships may be messy at times – but they’re worth the investment.”

He added, “Connecting with family bears much fruit.” 

While many other people “can accomplish your job at work, replace you on your weekend men’s league team or serve where you volunteer, you are the only person in the world who is the father of your children,” said Bradley, addressing dads directly. 

That special role, he said, “should be cherished and be very high up” on the priority list. 

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Said Bradley, “Enjoy your kids and connect with them daily. Listen to their fears, find activities that are meaningful, give them wise advice, make memories together, read the Bible, open up your heart, be at their games, go on trips, pray with them – and try out your best dad jokes.” 

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He said the job of being a dad “is relational, intellectual, emotional, physical and spiritual.”

He advised other dads, “Don’t give your best at work and just bring ‘leftovers’ home.”

He also said, “God is with you every step. And the truth is that being grateful and intentional as a dad leads to the profound joys of fatherhood.” 

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