25 May Fathers of Influence
“The righteous who walks in his integrity-blessed are his children after him!”
Proverbs 20:7 ESV
Last night, we had our weekly family devotional. Usually, these evenings include fun, wacky and memorable activities. Well, yesterday’s activity had to do with spinning as quickly as one can and attempting to walk towards another family member. The kids loved it! Jason ended up being nauseous from his spin and I had a throbbing headache, as a result. Needless to say, we’re not that young and resilient anymore!
My 2 year-old son wanted his daddy to pick him up and spin with him. He wanted to join in on the craze. As I watched Jason lift our son, hold him tight and begin to spin, my heart was filled with a number of emotions all at once. There was some sorrow for my own fatherless childhood and what never was. But more importantly, there were feelings of gratitude and joy. I was able to watch a father and son moment. I was able to experience something so precious and priceless.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the percentage of children living with a single mother has nearly tripled within the last few decades. I belong in this category. I used to dread any father-related events. Father’s Day was one of the worst days for me. Growing up, I would cringe when teachers would pass out crafts for children to create and decorate for their fathers. At church, it was even worse. The WHOLE service was dedicated to fathers. Everyone would dress up in their Sunday’s best and chat about their plans for afterwards. I’d overhear the conversations and just think about our plans, which usually involved a typical day with no extra meaning…except…on these specific days, I was forced to look at my home situation and be reminded that I didn’t have a healthy father figure around. I couldn’t be a “Daddy’s girl”. And as much as I’d hear all those sermons where God was a father to the fatherless, I still felt that void in my heart.
Allow me to bring you back to my present life. With Father’s Day only a few weeks away, I can say that I no longer dread it. While I’m highly aware of the painful emotions these certain holidays can bring to many, I’m very grateful that my children will not experience what I have. They’ll have their own mountains to climb in due time. But for now, they know the love of their dad. They know that Daddy will make things better. They know that they can jump on Daddy’s back and he’ll give them a piggyback ride. They also know that they are safe in their father’s arms.
It is one thing to have an amazing husband. But, with the past chapters of my life story, I can’t describe the immense joy I experience when I see my children’s eyes light up every time Jason arrives home from work. When I see him chase the kiddos down the hallway playing “Monster” and tickling them, my heart is overwhelmed. When I hear him praying with them at night, I hear hope. I hear a success story.
Even though my family and marriage are not perfect, we’ve conquered and have overcome many obstacles thrown our way. And with God at the center, He’s turned those Father’s Day mournings so many years ago, into the joy I now feel every day.
I’m incredibly blessed to be able to honor my husband on Father’s Day in the next few weeks. He’s such a hard worker. He’s come a LONG way to being the man he is today. And I cherish every step he takes towards bettering himself as a person and child of God.
I believe there are many amazing fathers who have been overshadowed by the painful actions of others holding the title, “Dad”. And sometimes it seems they may not get the credit they deserve. Well, I’d like to give a standing ovation to all the hard-working fathers who take their role seriously and with great care. Their actions make a difference in their children’s lives.
To my husband, your actions have already made a difference in our children’s lives. Thank you. I honor you.