Saturday, June 15, 2013

Father "No's" Best!

A tribute to my very special dad...

First of all, let me preface this post by saying this:  my dad will never read this.  There is no computer/internet access in their home.  I don't think he has ever even touched a computer, unless he was helping move one.

Having said that, I want to honor him. 

I am the youngest of 4 girls.  I'm sure Dad would have loved to have a son.  I'm sure my sisters can attest to the fact, though, that he never showed it.  Each of us has a very special relationship with Dad, and we know he loves us so much.

Being the youngest, I have to admit that I learned the ways of a little girl with her daddy.  Batting the eyes, sticking out the bottom lip, and just a bit of whining...sometimes worked!  I especially remember being on vacation in Colorado one summer.  I had my eyes on a cap gun.  It had the whole Old West sheriff's gun look, and came with a roll of caps.  I have no idea why I wanted it, but knew I just "had" to have it.  I went straight to my daddy...and returned to our camp site with a white-handled cap gun!  I'm sure all the other campers really enjoyed hearing that for the next several days.

Something even more important I learned at a young age:  when Daddy said "No," he meant it!  Back in the late 60's and early 70's, at least in our home, respect for your elders was simply not questioned.  Our dad built that into us from the beginning.  I only remember telling him "no" once as a child.  The one, quick swat across my posterior was all the convincing I needed to change that habit!

Dad has always been a hard-working Kansas farmer.  His love of the land and the God who created it are something I cannot even put into words.  He has agonized over lack of rain/too much rain, snow/lack of snow, weeds, coyotes eating calves, mama cows having a hard time birthing, and the just-right time to plant a crop/harvest a crop pretty much his entire life. Though I haven't lived on the farm for over 23 years, I still have a peaceful feeling in my heart whenever I step outside the city limits and see rolling hills of farmland.  It's just a part of who I am.

Most important of all, my dad has a deep and personal relationship with God.  He was born at the beginning of the Great Depression, served in the Korean War, has gone through cancer treatments, has struggled through the lean years of farming, and still, his faith in God is intact.  He was also my favorite Sunday school teacher.  He took the words from the teacher's guide, and made God's Word come alive for me.  For many years, he shared stories with the children at church--stories with a cute story-line and always a great practical application.

Daddy will celebrate his 83rd birthday this year.  He and my mom just celebrated their 62nd wedding anniversary.  What an amazing legacy he has given to all of us.

Happy Father's Day, Dad!

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