Yesterday was Father’s Day & it seems fitting to take some time to honor the 5 most important men in my life. One day, this list will include my three boys but for now, I still get to think of them as my ‘little guys’. However, I would be lying if I said that I had no desire to see them grow up because I think one of the greatest things of being a mom is that I will see them cross the threshold of child to adult one day. Thankfully, it isn’t today!
For the longest time, there really was only one man in my life, my Father. The irony of life, I suppose, is that I never really knew how amazing this man was until I was grown up & had a family of my own.
My dad has taught be a lot about faith. I talked about him in another post a little while back. I think his faith might be the thing that will always define him to me. Even when I have the chance to walk through tough times with him, watching closely as he lives out his faith, I still feel blindsided by how pure it is. Life rocks him. Life is cruel at times. Life has given him some curveballs that no matter how hard he tries to time his swing, he misses. Yet through it all, he believes. Because of him, I have learned to believe, too.
As important as it was to see his faith in action, I think the thing he revealed most to me was what was important in my future husband. My father is full of compassion, ever loving towards my mother, caring of his sisters & their families, encouraging to his grandsons & pushing his children forward to our God given dreams & talents. He constantly put himself last, making sure his kids were a priority. He set the standard for what kind of heart I wanted in my husband.
The end of my eighth grade year, I went to the tryouts for our Freshman dance team. I really did not think I would make the team but to my surprise, I did! My dad was not only excited for me, he was encouraging of me. I am sure I sounded like an elephant dancing around as I practiced my routines in my bedroom full of jumps & kicks. He never complained. Soon, it was football season & our team would dance at every halftime. Where was my dad? In the stands. I always felt at ease knowing he was there. I can even remember him coming to a pep rally as well, just to see my team dance. I knew I wanted a husband that would be supportive of me. Dad showed me that it mattered to have someone invested in me.
Another thing that has been amazing to see is his absolute love for my mother. I firmly know that it is not skin deep. His love for her goes beyond anything superficial. I have seen him hold himself together (I am convinced it was because of God’s grace) as he heard news about my mom. I watched him hold her hand while she lay still in a hospital bed. He was never inconvenienced by the need to wake every 2 hours to make sure she had appropriate medicine. I sat beside him & saw tears fill his eyes as he asked hard questions about the new realities he & my mom would face together. Yet, through it all, he still carefully holds her hand, lovingly listens to her & helps her face the tough days that come her way. While the majority of this side of my dad I saw as an adult & already married, I also got to see a glimpse of it the first time my mom was sick & I was only 13. I learned that I wanted a husband that could love me regardless of how my body would fail, how life would cause me to age or how many flaws he would discover through time.
The list could go on & on but I would not know where to actually end it. To say I am thankful that God placed my father in my life would be a severe understatement. To say I am humbled that God allows me to see this man seek so intently after him would also be an understatement. What I do know is that my father is a precious gift & I am thankful to call him ‘dad’ & share him with so many people.