This is a very personal post that I hesitated to share with you, but after praying on it I have decided that it should be posted for posterity sake. My purpose of this blog is: 1) to share my heart with others in a hope that it may touch another; and 2) to give a gift to my children and grandchildren (some day, I hope) - the gift of sharing some of my thoughts and stories. Sharing about my Dad's influence on my life seems to meet both objectives. In addition, and just as importantly, I write this for my Dad. Often (and for me), we do not or cannot verbalize certain things in our hearts - that is not necessarily a bad thing, unless we fail to find a way to express them. For many reasons, I can express the deepest of those feelings only in my writing.
I have never experienced a single day in my life, not even a single minute, without my Dad being a huge part of my life. Easily, and without any doubt or hesitation, I can state for the record that my Dad has been the single greatest male influence in my life. Understand this about me (in case you have not been paying attention at all) - I adored my grandfathers and my father-in-law, they were outstanding mentors and companions. (Yes, companions - that's what grandfathers have the luxury and joy of doing). But their influence on who I am as a man is dwarfed by my Dad's.
Think on it - how few of my generation and youngsters today have or will have the blessing of being able to make the statements above? Praise God from Whom all blessing flow. Yet in stating it, I am humbled beyond description, for Dad has set the bar high.
I am 54 years of age, and I still ask my Dad for advice, and even more - I still go to my Dad for encouragement. Let me restate and explain: I still go to my Dad for encouragement - he is 81 years old today and has not been in good health for a number of years now. In fact, it is fair to say that my Dad has been afflicted with some very difficult and sometimes very painful ailments for several years now. He has even lost his eyesight for a time. I cannot even imagine what that must be like. Something seems amiss in this - I am blessed with good health for now; should not my Dad be coming to Me for encouragement? Like I said, he has set a high standard.
My Dad is not perfect. But that is perfectly acceptable - only our heavenly Father is the Perfect Father. There have been times when my Dad angered me, there have been times when he embarrassed me - but there has never been a time when my Dad disappointed me. He has always been there for me, no matter what my need. Even when I didn't, or thought that I didn't, need him, I always knew he was there for me. Always, every day of my life.
My Dad will not be with me in the flesh one day - I know that and I dread the deep loneliness of it. But this also I know: my Dad will still be there for me, always, every day, until I pass into our Father's Kingdom to be with him again.
But Dad would not want me talking of this - he would tell me that we must live every day seeking God's will for our lives and not waste a single day in worry or fear. He would not approve of me praising him either - in his wisdom, he would tell me that I should focus on praising my heavenly Father. He would be correct, of course, but I believe I am backed up by scripture on this one, Pops: "Honor Thy Father and Mother..."
I have not always honored my Father, and for that I am truly repentant.
I honor you, Dad. I love you.