A caring father loves his children. The father is pained when the child is lacking something; his entire goal is to see to it that all of his child's needs are met.
Even when the child behaves improperly, his father does not hit him. He knows that a smack will not accomplish anything. He knows that his child is not to be blamed; rather his surroundings and undesirable friends are the main cause for his unkind behavior.
His father takes his son aside and says to him: Why do you compare yourself to them? After all, they are hooligans who roam the streets and tear off an apple and eat it without making a blessing. You, on the other hand, go to cheder, wear tzitzis, and make blessings. When, with G-d's help, you will become bar mitzvah, you will be eligible to complete a minyan. Nine Jews will be waiting for you in shul and will not be allowed to recite certain prayers without you as the number ten. It is the greatest act that you can do. With these words the father lifts up his child and empowers him to improve his behavior.
Sefer HaSichos 5709, p. 309