So, Father’s Day is here again.
I’m sorry, but I just can’t be excited about it. Maybe it’s because of all my faults. Maybe in a sea of screw ups, a few life preserver moments of manly clarity and wisdom doesn’t inspire me towards feeling accomplished as a husband or father. I just don’t think it’s necessarily something to relish in or put on a pedestal. It doesn’t seem like it’s something to be highly regarded from a fatherly point of view. I’m sorry, but I’m just not feeling it and frankly I never do. I am a father simply because and only because, my wife blessed me with two children. I am a father because that’s what my children call me. I feel more privileged and honored by that than by anything I’ve ever done in my role as a father. To be honest, if they still love me and if my wife still loves me and I think they do, then they have shown me the face of God and I have probably failed to adequately acknowledge it.
What I mean by that is that despite my mistakes, screw ups, and let’s face it, my sin, my family continues to love me. Seriously, if THAT isn’t a picture of God’s abundant grace, I don’t know what is. That they could see past all my goof ups, and even recall one positive thing, it feels as if that one thing was clothed in the righteousness of Christ himself.
While my oldest son was serving in the navy, during an email exchange when he was out to sea he recalled my encouraging him to finish out a season of football as a youth. He didn’t get to play that much and wanted to quit, but I told him he had to hang in there. It’s a lesson of perseverance for whatever reason he remembers well and I am humbled that he does. Despite that encouragement, my mind wanders to my youngest and worries and wonders if he will remember something positive I tried to teach him or encourage him towards, despite the sea of mistakes that will flood his childhood. (You know, because kids always remember THAT stuff!)
Maybe this wasn’t the typical Father’s Day type message you might normally hear or want to hear, and for that I am sorry. It’s simply my thoughts on this day. Holidays and special days like this make me more contemplative and sometimes melancholy. If I could leave you with one encouraging thought, it’s this:
Instead of waiting to be loved and cherished on this day “made for you”, turn it upside down and remind them what a blessing it is to be their husband and father. Let them know how special you feel that God has blessed you with the family you have.
It’s just an idea…
A truly Happy Father’s Day to all.
Blessings to you for many more!
(Originally published 2014)