Our daughter, Sarah, recently wrote to April and I with remembrances of their dad. She gave me permission to share them today.
Dear Mom and April,
For a number of reasons, I’ve been thinking a lot about what I love so much about Dad. So many thoughts were swirling around in my mind, I thought it would be nice to collect my favorites and get them written down. You both love him so much, I think you’ll enjoy thinking about these things as well. God has indeed blessed us richly. In these difficult days, I’m encouraged by Psalm 68:19 “Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears us up; God is our salvation.” He bears us up, He faithfully bears Dad up as well – sustaining and ministering to His soul in ways we can not. God has been so kind to us, given us so many sweet memories. We have much to be thankful for.
I love my Dad. I am so grateful that God allowed me to grow up with such a Father.
There could be many more, but here are 10 things I love best about my Dad:
A godly Christian man - FIRST and foremost, my Dad would describe himself as a sinner, saved by God’s grace. This defines him best. So thankful for his Christian leadership. He is a godly man - hungry for the word of God. He’d sit at the breakfast table, Bible open, nearly every day. It is a sweet memory in my mind.
A joyful man – enjoying life. Life with my Dad was F U N! He made our childhood so happy. Adventure, practical jokes, laughter… A treehouse with a zip-line so we could fly from the side yard, over the fish pond, into the front yard! Fun times. But even in the not-so-fun-times, during the trials of life, he kept smiling. His face – filled with permanently etched smile lines proves it! I’m thankful for my joyful Dad.
A working man - laboring with excellence, bringing glory to God in his work. The slogan he chose for his electrical company was “service with a conscience.” He worked hard and he did it right! He used his creativity at work and at home. He’d embark on big projects that many would say “couldn’t be done” and then he’d go ahead and find a way to do it. I often admire his attention to detail and the difficult tasks he would take on. He was a hard worker, but work didn’t dominate his life – he knew when to stop.
A family man – investing time in his wife and daughters. This is a precious quality. He spent TIME with us. Not just quality time, but a quantity of quality time. He took Mom on dates. Even April and I got to go out on special dates with Dad. I’m grateful.
A humble man – ready to serve, open to correction, ready to listen before speaking. Dad was happy to serve behind the scenes without recognition. He didn’t seek attention and was content to do the menial tasks that not many people noticed. He admitted his faults and shared his mistakes. He was humble enough to learn and gain wisdom from anyone who was speaking the truth – even when it was coming from someone younger than himself. Even April and I were welcome to come to him and share a concern – and he would listen.
A faithful man – with eyes and affections for one woman only. His faithful commitment to Mom has always been evident. Truly a one-woman-man. His love, attentions, and compliments are strictly for her. To him, she is the standard of beauty.
A bold man – unashamed of the gospel. He wanted everyone to know about God and their need for Jesus Christ. I loved his license plate, “R U SAVED?” which prompted many gospel opportunities at gas stations while he was filling up his truck. Even in this final trial of life, his desire is to make much of Christ as he goes through the valley of the shadow of death.
A submissive man – submissive to God’s will for his life. When trials came, he continued to trust the Lord, submitting his desires to the plan of God. I’m grateful for this example. With Job, he would concur, “the Lord gives, and the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord.”
A content man – grateful for all of God’s gifts. Dad could make much out of little and did not make it his ambition to own the next new thing. I often remember him reading one of his favorite books, The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment. He finds satisfaction in God’s providence.
A prepared man – ready to be with the Lord, eagerly anticipating His return. One look in my Dad’s Bible will tell any observer that he loved to study the book of Revelation and any passage describing the 2nd coming of Jesus…they are well marked and highlighted. He’d often say “He could return today!” with a twinkle in his eye. It was a real special treat to have this cheerful reminder spoken often throughout my childhood. His eyes have been fixed on eternity with His Savior for a long time.
Thank you, God, for my dear Dad!