I fancy myself a fairly self-sufficient guy. I know how to live off the land. I have both training and experience in survival in various climes and locales. I have treated my own wounds, built houses, rebuilt engines, farmed, and enjoyed all of it.

But I don’t know everything. Sometimes, like this weekend when the battery in my truck caught fire, I need to ask for advice. When that happens, I call my Dad. Doesn’t matter that I have a friend in my phone that is an SAE-certified mechanic, Dad is the person I call. And when I ask him a question that he doesn’t know the answer to, he does the same thing. “Is it possible for the short to be inside the battery itself?” “I don’t know, let me call my dad, I’ll call you back.”

“I just talked to my dad, and he said that it is possible for the short to be inside the battery itself, and in fact that is likely since you haven’t found any heat or arcing anywhere other than the battery terminal.” As I set out on the mile-and-a-half walk to the nearest auto parts store carrying my old battery, I felt more confident just for having gotten advice from Dad and by extension Grandpa. As it turned out, the short was not in the battery itself, but the information I had received from my dad helped me find the problem far more quickly than I likely would have found it otherwise.

Dads are important.

Dads teach us how to be men.

Sure, sometimes some other male figure may step up and do a dad’s job, like Walt Kowalski did in Gran Torino, teaching a surrogate son to be a man. Yet that reinforces, rather than denigrates, the importance of fatherhood. The directionless bankruptcy of masculinity today is due to two factors: men who shirked their role as a father, and women who stole their children’s right to a father through the artificial bastardization of divorce.

Both are despicable.

Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! —Hebrews 12:9 (NIV)