Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Thankful Heart Of A Father

Father's Day is a strange day in our calendar. No doubt it was contrived by a greeting card company, because greeting cards are the most bestowed gift on Father's Day. While being a father is a blessing and I love receiving cards from my two children, I have no good feelings about Father's Day regarding my own father. He was not a good father most of the time. I have only a very few good memories of growing up in my father's house. I certainly hope my own children would not say the same.

So, Father's Day for me is not a day to be thankful for my father, although I am glad he helped with my birth, but a day for me to be thankful for being a father. God has blessed me with two wonderful children. Both are in their fifties now and the days of frolicking with them are long past. These days I simply rejoice in their good character and thank the Lord for the way they are using their lives in His work.

My wonderful daughter is a registered nurse and a budding leader in her church. Although she was a late bloomer, she brings me much joy. She has given me four grandchildren and two great grand children. More than that, though, she has given me the precious gift of knowing she serves the Lord with her life and blesses others along the way. She is married to a godly man, gifted in matters of personal finance, which he shares with others through their church. However, he makes his living as a conservationist for the United States Department of Agriculture.

My son, whom many of my readers know, is an attorney, but an attorney who simply uses his practice to make it possible for him to work in a ministry God has called him to—a ministry of helping churches through difficulties. When he was about to graduate from college, we had a conversation one day about whether he should go to law school or seminary. My advice then was that if he was undecided about it he should go to law school. No one should go to seminary unless he or she has felt a call to do so with great certainty. At that time God was just beginning to deal with him about his real life's work. Besides, I told him, there would always be a place in the pulpit for a Christian lawyer. That proved prophetic because he is welcomed today in pulpits all across the land, preaching his message of unity in the body of Christ. In addition to that he is married to a godly woman, who works on a church staff, and together they have given me two of the most talented and gifted granddaughters one could hope for.

Having two children who serve the Lord is a blessing I recall every day, not just on Father's Day. However, when my kids are bestowing their love and cards on me on Father's Day, they should know that I am thanking God for both of them and the manner in which they have chosen to live their lives. I look forward to Father's Day not for the gifts or cards I might receive, but for the opportunity to stop and give thanks for my two wonderful children and their families. I hope they know how much I love them and how proud they have both made me and their mom.

Thank you, Lord, for godly children.