Good, Good Father

What does the word “Father” mean to you?

For some, it brings back warm feelings of safety, provision, wisdom and laughter.

I always knew that I was supremely safe when my father was around … that no verified need of mine would ever go unmet … that I had a grand source of wisdom at my beck and call … and that when Dad was home there was always something to be happy about.

I had a rare father … a one-in-a-million Dad

He was a general of the faith, a student of the Bible, a missionary-supporter, a lover of my mom, a gardener and as steady as they come.

My dad’s name will never be in a history book for discovering the cure to some dread disease, for establishing world peace or for making millions of dollars. But in my book, there will never be anyone like him.  No one will ever come close to the man that my dad was. No one at all.

You see … a man’s name is never recorded for growing the world’s tastiest tomato, or for planning unforgettable family vacations that were filled with fun and adventure, or for teaching the Bible to the adult Sunday school class for nearly 40 years.

The world doesn’t deem it of value to know that my dad was never in debt, he only used a tender tone of voice in the home and that he supported an entire family of missionaries. 

My dad was an expert donut-maker, bicycle rider and was the consummate Jack-of-all-trades.  There was no plumbing problem that he was unable to fix … no toy that he was unable to put back together … and no vegetable that he was unable to can or freeze!

If a “Hall of Fame of Fathers” existed … my dad would deserve the number one spot.  Year after year after year.  Every year.  To infinity and beyond!

And so, when I hear the endearing word, “Father” … or “Dad” … or “Daddy” … my heart swells with a sweet pride and with a deep gratitude for the man who raised me and loved me.

He was a general … a giant … and a champion.  And he was my dad.  I was his little girl.  Even now, although he has been in heaven for 15 years, my heart expands at knowing the blessing of being raised by a truly great man.

However, for other people, the word “father” stirs up emotions of dread, displeasure and disappointment. My heart breaks for you if you don’t have the same memories of your dad that I do of mine. How I wish that I could turn back the hands of time and invite you, as a child, to join in the benefit of living under the same roof with me and my dad!  There was nothing like it.  Nothing like it at all.

Since I am unable to share my earthly dad with you … this Father’s Day … I’d like to share my heavenly Father with you!

You and I do indeed share a good, good Father.  He is compassionate beyond understanding and generous beyond measure; all of the wisdom of all of the ages begins and ends in His vast storehouse of knowledge.

Your Daddy’s heart is filled with great joy over your life and He can’t wait to spend time with you! He is never too busy for you and is never preoccupied with sports, technology or finances.  Isn’t that a rich comfort to your soul that has been desperately longing for a date with your Dad?!

Our Dad is infinitely patient and is never critical.  He believes that you are the masterpiece of His creation and loves watching your life unfold. 

He cheers for you when you are weak … sings to you when you are afraid … and believes in you when you don’t believe in yourself.

He is quite a Man, that Dad of yours!

Your Dad is slow to anger … and even when He does get angry it doesn’t last very long. It’s His favor that lasts for your entire life. 

When you feel alone, He gets your older Brother in on the family action.  Your older Brother always joins in the cheers, always is praying and always sings the songs the loudest that are meant for you and for you alone. Your older Brother’s Name is Jesus … perhaps you have heard of Him?

Your Dad loves to take long walks with you on this journey known as “life” and refuses to allow you to walk alone. He knows that there are dangers ahead, mountains to climb and dark valley’s to travel through; He holds your hand and whispers in your ear words of encouragement and hope - no matter what the topography of your life looks like.

Your Dad is quite the Man! You have that one-in-eternity kind of Father. So, this Father’s Day, rather than being filled with regret over what your childhood home was lacking, perhaps you could stir up some gratitude for the best Father of all!

Spend time with Him because He is just one prayer away. Listen to His voice because He has oceans of wisdom for you.  And please remember to just jump in His lap and enjoy His arms around you.  There’s nothing else He would rather do than to simply snuggle with you … not only on Father’s Day but also on every day of the year!

Thanks for listening to my heart this week. As you know by now, my heart is truly not a perfect heart but it is a heart that is filled to overflowing with gratitude for the life I have been given and for the people who walk with me. And, it continues to be a heart that is relentlessly chasing after God, and all that He is!