Dear Dad, As I watch you in your older years, it is difficult for me to watch your body and brain succumb to the ages of life (Parkinson's, Dementia and your health along the way). You are my dad and a man who has taught me so much and continues to do so in your elderly years. You have always impressed upon me the importance of hard work, of finishing the job, of commitment, of being a man (even though you were not yet a Christian at this time of training - you paved the legacy for me to connect the dots). I want to thank you for making me into the husband and father that you have worked so hard to do.
Do I always get that right? No. Am I selfish and sometimes fail to find the lessons in your many years of training? Yes. But I strive to be the man who you want me to be and the husband and father that you so drove into me. If it were in my power not to work, not to raise my kids and not to be the husband that you want me to be, I would quit everything and bring you with me and listen to you and hold you and comfort you without mom. You taught me the importance of marriage and to avoid the temptations of life. You quoted Shakespeare to me in ways to avoid debt and to be raised right.
The one thing that I am so grateful for is after all the years of me trying to lead you to Jesus Christ that you never heeded those words, that is, until the day that I had a son. Thanks to a dear church friend of mine that told me to be real in my faith and to share my heart with you, which lead me to talk about the love of my son (your grandson). I said to you that if the world required that I sacrifice my son to save the world that I would tell the world to go to hell. I caught that moment of toughness turned to weakness in you, when you exhaled and held a tear back and said to me, 'That is how I feel about you" and then to watch your expression melt when I shared what God did with His son for you and me and my son.
I am so grateful to you that was the day that the Lord called you to be his. This is the legacy that I want from my son, dad. Yes, I want him to understand the gifts of life that we are given:
- The gift of work
- The gift of money
- The gift of friends
- The gift of learning
- The gift of problems
- The gift of family
- The gift of laughter
- The gift of dreams
- The gift of Giving
- The gift of Gratitude
- The gift of a day
- The gift of Love
But what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his own soul? It doesn't! "Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us," Hebrews 12:1
Dad, thank you for instilling in me the importance of being a man of God. At the time of your training, you didn't know Jesus Christ as Savior (yet), but he was preparing you for what lies ahead. Thank you for always being there for me and I want to especially thank you for standing your ground and giving me boundaries and allowing me to fail within that framework. You have taught me a lot - how to be a man. For that, I am eternally grateful. Thank you for hearing God's call to accept His Son as Savior. I cannot wait for you and mom to be re-united. In the meantime, please have patience with me as I learn again and again to be patient with you and pray that you will be the patient with me as we both age.
I love you!
Dear Legacy dads,
Lance and I want to encourage you in your walks. No matter the past, no matter where you are in the present, trust in the Lord and lean not on your own understanding. Acknowledge him in all of your ways and He will make your paths straight. The question that was asked to all of you in the beginning was, "Which way are you running, dad?" This is an epic question and one that deserves to be answered by all of our legacy dads and moms out there.
Ask yourselves these following questions:
- By my activities and those that I/we have our children involved in, am I doing the best at what God calls us to do as dads (moms/parents)?
- Would my checkbook affirm that I am a disciple of Christ
- Would my activities and habits and daily doings show that?
- How can I take the idols out of my life (sports, activities, hobbies that take me away from serving God)?
- How do I find God's will in my life?
- How do I get in the relationship with God in such a way that He speaks to me?
- Am I/are we doing what God calls us to do?
- If not, why not?
It's never to late to leave the legacy that God wants you to lead. Surrender and Obey...do not just read His words, do what they say.