Saturday, June 16, 2007


“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in the truth”

What more could a man leave his children?

What riches could a father leave that would mean more than giving his children the basis of faith?

Long before I was aware of concepts of life and death, Dad was preparing for them. He ordered his life so that his life, or his death, would have far reaching effects.

I was completely unprepared for his passing. In my hearts imaginings, I had accepted that there would be a time in my life when I could not pick up the phone and call him for advice, or that I could not drive across town to sit down with him and tell him about my problems. That time was off somewhere in the far reaching future.

Dad used to joke with me, both of us being electricians, he had taught me everything I knew. I used to come back with, “No Dad, you taught me all that you know. The rest of this I learned on my own.” Neither of those was completely accurate. He hadn’t taught me all that I knew, nor had he taught me everything that he knew. What he had taught me was “enough.” The wonder of it all is that even now, he still teaches me more and more every day. His life teaches me as I listen to the stories told by those that knew him. His life continues to teach me as I recall conversations we had, sometimes in complete disagreement.

His death teaches me as well. It speaks more poignantly about the finiteness of life than any of his masterful lessons. Let me assure you fathers out there that no matter what you say to your children, you still hold the place of immortal in their lives. You must consider the words and actions you present to them. Dad did not leave me a vast estate with bulging bank accounts. What he did leave me, were his words and his actions. They were the sometimes-stumbling thoughts of a man keenly aware of his mortality to his son, stricken by the invincibility of his father. He knew what I could not know, and knew he had to prepare me for the time that I did know.

He left me a brilliant legacy. He gave me a radiant testament to faith in God. There is not enough time for me to tell you all the ways he helped shape and mold me. Time will not allow me to extol all his good and generous characteristics. More than a few have told me since his death that they see a lot of him in me. While I am not called to be, nor could I ever be, him, it is an honor to be compared to this tower of love and compassion.

This man you were fortunate enough to call friend or pastor, I was blessed to call Dad. I have never missed him more than I do today and that missing, is an integral part of my blessing. His profound influence on my life will ever be part of my banner, like the mantle of Elijah.

For more reasons than I can count, thank you, Dad.

Happy Fathers Day.

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