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How important is the role of fatherhood in the lives of children? The answer might be summed up best, by the negative impact on society when fathers are not present in their lives. Is there a tangible impact when such a scenario exists? 
Research from the National Center for Fathering suggests that this is the case. Read the following statement from its website, Fathers.com. It’s too clear to ignore:
"...there's a crisis at hand. Father-absence affects about 27 million children in America, and it’s spreading. It’s linked to higher rates of poverty, failure in school, teen pregnancy, substance abuse, violent crime, depression, and ultimately a loss of hope.”1


Compelling statistical data reveals that children respond positively to the following characteristics found in a father:
Loving the child – When a father truly loves a child, it is evident in the way that he treats them. Kids know the difference between mere words, and words put into actions.
Loving the child’s mother – We don’t live in a perfect world, but research suggests that when a man loves the mother of his children, the child’s life-outlook responds in amazing ways.
Involvement - Kids want to know that they are important to their father. His physical and emotional presence in their lives demonstrates this idea.
Insight – A father’s awareness of a child’s abilities, challenges, and vulnerabilities gives him unique perspective into how he can best serve them as a father.
Positive Consistency - A dad who demonstrates predictability to his child in the way he believes, behaves, and reacts, helps lay the foundation for the responsible, mature adult that his child can become in the future.
Encouraging – A father’s encouragement brings stability, belief, and responsibility into a child’s life like nothing else can.
Being a “good dad” involves more than just “showing up.” It is responsible, intentional, and vital to the well-being of society’s children. It’s something worth aspiring to, praying for, and celebrating!

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By Michael Temple. Copyright © 2012 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

1National Center for Fathering - Fathers.com

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