Decision Making Process for Dads

Making big decisions is something we dads have to do from time to time. Because of their importance and the process involved, today’s post is a bit longer than most.

A dad recently asked for my input on a very big decision he is considering — a career change from being employed to self-employment at home so he can give more time to his family.

Since this is something I have done — more than once — I shared with him from my experiences and thoughts on making big decisions. My response doesn’t cover everything on this topic, but here is what I said…

Regarding transitioning to working at home, I commend you highly on that decision. The benefit of having the flexibility with your time by working at home is extremely rewarding, much more-so than making more money working for someone else at the expense of time away from your family.

Having said that, I can also tell you it can be very challenging. Among other things, you must be very disciplined to focus on your work, and you do face risk of lapses in income.

First and foremost, you must be led by God’s spirit. Listen to His still, small voice and the impressions He speaks to your heart. Pay attention as you read the Bible and as you listen to other believers (not just Bible teachers but ALL believers who are walking with God.)

Second is unity with your wife. You must both be very confident and united in God’s direction. As the leader, you must take the action steps, but you should desire and esteem her input very highly.

God has confirmed His will for my wife and I on many occasions by speaking the same thing to us separately. It is amazing and very confirming when we come together and discover He has been telling us each the same thing. When this does not happen, I tend to not make a decision but continue to seek Him, listen to what He is saying to me, wait on His timing, and confirmation.

Third, God sometimes stirs in our hearts a longing/desire for the direction He wants us to go. For me, he put a heavy burden on my heart for dads to discover and embrace their influence and leadership as dads in their families.

In what way do you desire to help other people? What problem do you want to solve? What can you see yourself doing day in and day out? Once you have identified this, begin to discern God’s specific leading in relation to it.

A brochure I once picked up said this on the cover… “If you followed your heart, where would you go?” This question was so profound yet simple to me, I still keep that brochure in my laptop bag to this day as a reminder to continue to ask myself that question when facing important decisions.

Obviously, our hearts can deceive us if our desires are impure, but scripture tells us God shows Himself strong on behalf of those who are wholehearted toward Him. (Read the story surrounding 2 Chronicles 16:9.)

Fourth, be attentive to your circumstances and notice any repetition. When I was seeking God on moving, He identified a particular city and then one time after another brought up the name of that city through numerous random circumstances. Circumstances by themselves aren’t everything, but I have found them to be very important when seeking direction from God on a matter.

FInally, let me leave you with a quote that riveted me the first time I read it… “God responds to our faith, not our needs.” Jesus was frustrated, disappointed, and even limited in what He could do on numerous occasions when he encountered lack of faith.

Be a man of faith, which means simply “relying on God.” Don’t be presumptuous and foolish in your actions, but wait on God and step out in faith and obedience as He leads you. Do not merely make decisions based on logic and reason.

I recently had to make a very important decision that did not make sense from a financial standpoint, but I felt very strongly that God told me the time to make the decision was now and not wait for everything to fall into place financially first. My wife was in full support of this decision. So I took the step of faith and “stepped out into the water” BEFORE it parted, so to speak!

Here’s the bottomline…

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” ~ Proverbs 3:5-6

I hope this helps you with decisions you may be facing in your life and on behalf of your family. You might want to bookmark this post for future reference, and also forward it to other dads you may know who need encouragement in making decisions.

Blessings to you and your family,

Joey Watkins


Caught Between A Dream and a Job

Caught Between A Dream and a Job offers very practical help for transitioning from a job you don’t enjoy to pursuing your dreams. This book helps you identify your ultimate purpose and helps you transition startegically from where you are to where you really want to be. Watch a video interview with the author and Learn More and Order.

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Chris Klicka: A Great Family Dad Leaves Us A Powerful Message

A great Family Dad finished his earthly life last week… in the prime of fatherhood.

On October 12th, Chris Klicka, a 48-year-old faithful husband and father to 7 children, passed away after a 15-year battle with the symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis.

His life, his commitment to his family, and his vocational work were an inspiration to many and a blessing to those who knew Chris personally.

Chris worked as an attorney for Homeschool Legal Defense Assn. and helped many families who faced obstacles exercising their right to homeschool.

This past June — just 4 months before his death — Chris was interviewed about his physical struggle and how he dealt with his feelings and suffering with MS. His attitude was amazing. The words he shared leave us dads with a profound message on suffering, discouragement, pain, priorities, and the brevity of life.

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Gary Keesee Faith Hunt, For Dads who Deer Hunt

About once or twice a month I try to spotlight a good resource for dads to read or a good one to read aloud to your family. (After all, family reading is one of the best ways you can spend time with your children.)

If I were to ask my children to list their favorite books we’ve read together as a family, one of the books that would be near the top of their list is Faith Hunt.

It is written by Gary Keesee, a family dad who has five children, owns several businesses, pastors, speaks at conferences, hosts a weekly tv show… and loves to deer hunt.

Years ago, God spoke to Gary about his deer hunting. No, He did not tell Gary to “give it up.” Instead, He taught Gary how to trust Him for his deer.

At first, Gary had no idea what God was telling him… “Trust God for my deer?”

But each deer season, God taught Gary a new spiritual truth to apply to his deer hunting. And each deer season, Gary got his deer quickly.

Amazingly, Gary has had 100% success in bagging deer for over 16 years now.

He even has a trophy deer that ranked among the top bucks in Ohio… and of course a “deer story” to go with it.

Gary Keesee Faith Hunt bookIn his book, Faith Hunt, Gary has recorded many of his deer stories as well as the spiritual truths he has learned from his hunting experiences. God’s Word and it’s truths hold the keys that have given Gary 100% success in deer hunting for over 16 years.

As a guy, you will enjoy reading Faith Hunt.

And if you have children at home to read with, they will also be captivated by these real-world hunting stories while learning key spiritual truths they can apply to their lives all the way into adulthood!

Faith Hunt is a featured resource at–

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When God Closes The Door On Your Work

As dads, part of leading our families involves the work God calls us to. Among other things, our work is a significant means of income, a primary channel through which God, our source of provision, supplies money to us and our family.

So imagine this scenario at your place of work. It’s Friday afternoon and your supervisor steps into your office with a seemingly casual question…

“Can you come into the conference room for a brief meeting?”

You finish your email, save the document, or complete whatever task you are right in the middle of, and then make your way down the hall to the company conference room. In the past, you’ve participated in many staff meetings, strategy planning sessions, and even birthday parties in this conference room, but none like today’s meeting.
door closing“As you know, our company’s revenue has gone way down in recent months, and we’ve had to evaluate ways to significantly cut costs. Effective immediately, your position is being eliminated.”

And with that, you find yourself out of a job — without any advance notice and through no fault of your own. What makes this especially painful is the fact that you have given five years of faithful service to your company, many of those weeks spent working well over 40 hours.

When God closes a door in our lives — especially a major one like our work — the natural tendency is to panic and to project negative “what if” scenarios about our future. If we haven’t been in close relationship with God and regularly hearing from Him, we can be be easily overcome by feelings of fear, rejection, and even anger.

The song lyrics of “Look For A Window” give encouragement and advice to the person facing this very scenario:

Hot on the trail of God’s will
And getting warmer still
Stopped by the slam of a door
God, what’d You do that for?

When God closes a door, look for a window
Don’t stand at the door, there might be a window

Responsibilities change
And so do our pathways
One way God shows which way to go
Is to let the old road close

There’s no point in getting down on yourself
God is only pointing you somewhere else

In challenging times like this, a wise dad will go to God with this attitude in his heart and prayers…
“God, this did not take you by surprise. You knew this was going to happen, and You knew when it would happen. I am so grateful that you take care of me and my family. Help me guard my heart and my thoughts as I seek to know what you are doing in my life and what the next step is for me to take. You know our financial needs, and You are the source of provision for my family. So help me remain full of faith in You during this time, waiting on You, listening for Your promptings, and obedient to whatever You tell me. And thank You for your faithfulness to me during the past five years that I worked at this company.”

As I consider my closing thoughts on this topic, my six-year-old son, totally unaware of what I am writing about, just blurted out in the other room…

“Do you know what song I have in my head right now?”

He then proceeded to sing a kid’s song version of Matthew 6:34 which says, “Do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will look after itself.”

I suspect that verse is directly for someone who will read this. Out of the mouth of babes!

If you’re in the midst of job transition, stay encouraged, and continue to…

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” ~Proverbs 3:5-6

Blessings to you and your family,
Joey Watkins

PS – This would be a good post to forward along to another dad you may know who is in the midst of job transition. Also, take him out for lunch or breakfast and spend some time with him talking and praying together. He would probably appreciate your friendship, kindness, and prayer support right now.

Do you know the five Biblical uses of money, the spiritual power behind money, the symptoms to guage where you are spiritually with your finances, and the two different economic systems in the world? Learn More

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The Dangers When Family Dads Compare: Envy, Coveting, Discontentment

Recently, I took my 8-year-old daughter out for one of her most favorite events… a date with dad.

After a fun visit to enjoy the furry and feathered animals at a local pet store, we walked across the parking lot to a newly built massive furniture store. It was HUGE — taking up at least a city block, if not more.

Once inside, we were immediately impressed with the size of the store, and even more impressed as we walked around looking at the variety and quality of all the expensive furniture inside.

That’s when I began to notice something potentially DANGEROUS happening in my heart.

I sat down and leaned back in a very nice leather recliner couch. It was luxurious and very comfortable.  I casually mentioned to my daughter, “This is much nicer than our couch.” She agreed.

Then we went over to the bedding section and began testing the selection of mattresses, laying down on one after another. Again, we commented on how much more comfortable and nicer they were than ours at home.

After wandering around the store together through room after room of showroom furniture, we finally made our way back to the entrance.

Heading back across the parking lot, we walked past a late-model luxury car. I noticed the inside, which sported an elegant wood trim dashboard console and stylish leather interior.

“Wow,” I thought to myself. “That car sure is a lot nicer than ours.”

My heart wrestled with these longings for “bigger and better”, “nicer and newer” things as we made our way to our car. Before me was a choice: to allow discontentment to take root in my heart, or to be thankful and grateful for the provisions God had already given to me and my family.

When we compare the provisions God has already given us with newer, nicer, more expensive, and more comfortable items that don’t belong to us, there is usually a struggle, a wrestling, a temptation, a DANGER — envy, covetousness, and discontentment.

Whether it’s a new car, a recreational vehicle, furniture, a house, or even our spouse, when we compare what has already been provided to us with what is “out there” in the marketplace, a tv commercial, a webpage, or even another person, we run the risk of becoming discontent in our hearts. Which can lead to foolish decisions and regrets, bondage to debt, and even more tragic consequences in our lives.

If we compare any provision God has given us with something else that we don’t have, there is potential for danger around the corner. We must always be on guard, paying attention to what is happening in our hearts in any given situation.

“Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life.” ~Proverbs 4:23

Blessings to you and your family,
Joey Watkins

Attention Dads with Daughters: Two Great Resources

She Calls Me Daddy book cover
She Calls Me Daddy
Seven Things Every Man Needs To Know About Building A Complete Daughter
Learn More

What A Daughter Needs book cover
What A Daughter Needs From Her Dad
How A Man Prepares His Daughter For Life
Learn More

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