The Next Nine Years

A few years ago I read THIS BOOK about raising boys. The concepts in the book were helpful but the actual plan the book presents just wasn’t my style. Nevertheless the book got me thinking about helping my sons (3) become men… My kids were young so it was one of those things I would get to at the appropriate time. Then, a month or two ago I was hit with a very scary reality. My oldest son, Noah is turning NINE this November… that mean’s, at least in our society, that he is 1/2 way to manhood.

Since then I have been planning, thinking, talking to Jennifer and praying about the appropriate steps to take to usher my son into manhood.

I developed a plan and last night we took a short trip over to Jessup Mannor so that I could reveal the plan to him. Here is what the night consisted of.

  • A talk about the purpose of the weekend.
  • Watching “The Passion of the Christ” and talking about it.
  • Giving him a real Bible… (as opposed to a childrens Bible)
  • And signing a “Father & Son Covenant”

The covenant was really the heart of the trip. Here is the text:

Noah McKade Clifton

August 20, 2010

NOAH, as your Dad GOD has given me the special job of teaching you how to become a man. Because I love you, and because I love God, I want to do the best I can at this special job.

In our society, a boy officially becomes a man when he is 18 years old. You are almost nine years old now, half way to being a man.

Since you were born your mom and I have been teaching you important things about how to live. We taught you how to eat, drink, get dressed, read, take a bath, tie your shoes and many other important things.

For the next nine years, it is my job to teach you how to become a man. I will teach you how to protect others, how to provide for your wife and children, how to manage your money, how to treat women, how to fix things, how your body works, what to do when someone hurts you and many other important things.

I will try to teach you these things all throughout the week but I want to make a special appointment with you every WEDNESDAY at 4pm to work on these things.

I want us to promise each other that we will meet every week at this time. There will be some times when we will not be able to meet; if we are apart from each other, if we have something important to do or if one of us is sick.

But other than those things I ask that you promise to meet me each week. I will do my very best to make our time together enjoyable so that you learn all the important things you need to know about becoming a man.

Our Covenant

Noah, I promise to meet with you each week. I promise to teach you how to become a man. I will always tell you the truth, I will never make fun of you, I will answer any question you have, I will do my very best to teach you all the things you need to know about being a Godly man.

Dad, I promise to meet with you each week. I promise to let you teach me how to become a man. I will always tell you the truth; I will always ask you the important questions that I have about life. I will do my best to learn from you how to be a Godly man. When God gives me a son, I will promise to teach him how to be a Godly man.


Dad, Clint Clifton


Son, Noah Clifton


  1. Reply
    Becky Porter says

    This brought tears to my eyes. What a blessed young man Noah is to have a father that will invest this time and effort in him. What a difference this would make in the world if more fathers would do this. If you live to be an old man, Clint, you will NEVER regret this….only thank God for the privilege of being allowed to do it and seeing the Godly life your son will have lived.

  2. Reply
    Jonathan Davis says

    That’s inspiring. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Reply
    Hannah says

    Okay im bawling, and struck with the fact that this will be us before we blink an eye! You and Jennifer do an amazing job raising your children!

    Hannah Hendrix

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