About Dad and Father’s Day

My father died in 2001 from a heart attack. My grandfather died in 1995 due to untreated COPD, although he never smoked as far as I know. I think it was due to his hobby of woodworking and breathing sawdust for many years. These were the two father figures in my life. One who was with me while growing up and one that wasn’t.

fathers-day-002I spent many hours, days even, being angry and hurt while I was growing up. Especially during my teen years. I felt betrayed and tossed aside by my dad, and my grandfather as good as he was didn’t know how to help me. I now realize that I wasn’t tossed aside by my dad, and my grandfather was at a loss about how to handle my feelings.

My real problem was that I got conflicting stories about our relationships. Sometimes it went one way and everything was OK. Then, later it would change and there would be frustration and bitterness mixed in with other feelings and being a teenager didn’t help. We would go to church and I would hear about the love of God and how we are supposed to emulate Him in our lives.

Then we would get home and things were…different. Nothing like what I had heard in church. There was no abuse or anything like that, but God’s Word wasn’t spoken of or read in our house until my grandfather was over 80. I would find him reading and studying the Bible then, but that didn’t happen while I was younger.

In many ways I would like to thank my father and grandfather for showing me what NOT to do in this life. So that when I became a father myself I would tell my son that I love him and I began reading the Bible when he was small. When he was 12 I became the pastor of a small church, so he got to see me preparing for sermons, praying and studying God’s Word.

Fathers have a lot on their shoulders, sometimes grandfathers do too. The only One Who can help the ENTIRE family to muddle through the teen years and come out still smiling and being a family is Jesus. Having that foundation in my life and my family’s life has helped me so much while raising my son. Since my family was broken before I even knew what a family was, I had no idea how to be a dad.

Thankfully, my wife and I had given our lives to Jesus before our son was born, although we were busy with work and I had gone back to school before I knew we were even having a child. Our life with Jesus suffered because of our work during this time because while I was in school, I worked in the lab at the hospital on the weekends. Sunday was my wife’s only day off, so many weekends during that time neither of us went to church. I do regret that, but it can’t be changed now.

God loves all of us and He doesn’t want us to live our lives without Him, but there are so many who choose to do this. Why? Because, love can’t be forced upon someone. God knows us better than we know ourselves because He has known us since before we were born, even from the beginning of creation. Just as any father on Earth, God wants a relationship with us. Seek to learn more about Him by reading His Word and praying for Him to reveal its wisdom to you for your life.

Have a wonderful Father’s Day!


Which are you?

So many seem to be willing to be fathers of children, but it seems that few today are interested in being Dads. You might think that they are the same, but they are not. Any man or boy who is past puberty can make a baby and become a father, but it takes a special person to be a Dad.

Dads care about their children and love them. They teach them what they can and they try to do what is best for them, while they can. A father or a “sperm donor” isn’t usually a real Dad at all. Some fathers are Dads, but not all Dads are the father of their children..at least not biologically. Many Dads love their children’s mother enough that they are willing to be a Dad to her children whether they are his biologically or not.

God is our Father in Heaven because He is the Creator of all and He loves us all equally. We should revere Him and listen to His Wisdom just as we do our Earthly fathers. Why? Because God is over us all and has the power to cut us off from His presence if we do not! Except, when God cuts us off from His presence it will be for eternity.

Seek Him out while there is yet time to do so. God loves all of us but He doesn’t like and cannot tolerate the sinful lives that some of us lead. The idol worship that many of us practice today is abhorrent to Him and the problem is that many of us don’t even realize that we have idols in our lives. We may not know it until we stand in front of Him at our judgement and then it will be too late.

Tomorrow, Dad

“Tomorrow is the most important thing in life. Comes into us at midnight very clean. It’s perfect when it arrives and it puts itself in our hands. It hopes we’ve learned something from yesterday.”  John Wayne

How can we have an effect on tomorrow? The future is our children and the only way for parents, fathers specifically, to have an impact on their lives is to bring them up seeing us put God first in our lives. Not just by going to church, but by living the teachings that are found in the Bible. Reading the Word, praying for and with your children daily if need be, talking with them about questions that they have concerning their faith and yours.

I heard that John Wayne became a Christian because of a question that a child asked him. It was a profound question, like children ask, but it was one that touched his heart and pricked it to the realization that he needed Jesus. My own walk with Christ was prompted by becoming a father and the realization that I needed to have Jesus in my life so that I could be a better role model for my son.

We will never be a perfect reflection of Jesus in this life, but even an imperfect reflection is better than just us alone. Our children deserve to have an example of God to be present in their lives and we as parents are the only example that they will see and hear. While they are small, they will say and imitate almost every word and gesture that you do and say. You all know this is true.

Fathers are admonished to not “provoke your children to discouragement”, but what does that mean? It means that you must not cause your child to lose hope in God, to lose hope in a future with Jesus, to lose hope period. Some translations render that word as “anger”, well when you are discouraged you do get angry so it fits. The point is that you must put your hope in God and in His purpose for you and your family so that your family will know where their hope lies…in God. Not in money or power or success or any material thing but in God.

That is our job as fathers and even though sometimes we fail miserably at controlling our tongues and the words which come from our mouths, we still should strive for the relaying of information to our children which embraces God and shows that we place our hope in Him. Then, if our children see us doing it, then they will see the value in God and Jesus and follow through in their lives.

Give your parents, mother and father alike, a hug and let them know that they did the best job that they could do. Encourage your children to live their lives so that their children will see Jesus in their lives and follow in your steps to Jesus. Children, love your parents enough to show it and don’t be afraid to do so, because Mom and Dad both would like to feel it from you whether they show it or not.

Think about your Mom or Dad tomorrow if they aren’t here, I know that I will be thinking of my grandpa and my Dad tomorrow. Happy Father’s Day to all of you who read this.


During our lifetimes we have all started a conversation, or a question with “Dad? Can I….” It is not a bad way of starting a conversation actually, because it shows that you want Dad’s input or his permission in some area of your life or for something that you would like to do or even as a preamble to asking for something like a gift, whether it is for your birthday or Christmas (if you celebrate it).

What I like to hear from my son is that he would like to do something with me. It doesn’t matter what it is. If I can do it, I will go anywhere and do anything with him as long as I feel that I am wanted…needed in his young life. The reason that I say this is because there are so many father/son relationships which are strained or even broken for whatever reason.

Kids need their fathers. They need them to be in their lives, maybe not 24/7 but they need them nonetheless. It doesn’t matter for what reason, it can be for any reason but children, boys and girls, need their Dad. I barely had one when I was growing up because of a divorce that happened when I was only five years old. Of course, I thought it was something that I did, and something that I could fix. I found out later that wasn’t the reason, that I was not even part of the reason for it. I grew up angry and resentful because of it, mainly because I was so young that nobody thought it was a good idea to tell me exactly why this had happened when I got old enough to understand. Dad’s usually are good at helping kids understand things, especially when they are around.

My point in this is that our father, our Dads are important and should be in our lives, not only when we are young but when we get older as well. I know of many who are taking care of their Dad now because he is older, because he needs his children. Is it too much to ask of us as children to be there for the man who was there for us? If your Dad wasn’t around while you were growing up, maybe you can get together now. Try not to hold a grudge against him, there usually was a good reason for his absence.

Our Father, the One in Heaven, would also like to be in your life. The difference between our Heavenly Father and our Dad that we have here on earth is that we must choose to have a relationship with Him. In some kids lives, they may need to choose to have a relationship with their earthly father as well, but that relationship is important too. God wants a relationship with each of us and He is always with us. His presence in your life can be felt and known at any time regardless of where you are. The reason behind His presence in your life is because He wants to be, but you have to choose to allow Him into your life.

In order for us to have a real relationship with God, we have to come to Him through Jesus. When we do that, we can have a relationship with God forever, not just while we are alive here but when our body dies, we will wake up in His presence. Isn’t that awesome!

That doesn’t mean that we will be in “church” forever. We will be worshiping Him but in other ways, we will be serving Him in whatever ways that we can. The difference in Heaven will be that we have the knowledge to do what needs to be done and we will have eternity to do whatever there is that needs doing.

By choosing to have a relationship with Jesus, you get a relationship with the Father too. He has loved each of us from the beginning, not of our life but the beginning of time itself. He has known you from long before you were ever born or even before the world, earth, was created for us to live on. His love, His compassion for us is so far beyond our comprehension that it is hard to explain. As the Scripture says, “my ways are higher than your ways, and my thoughts are higher than your thoughts”, God is simply saying that He is perfect in His knowledge of all things above and beyond what we can know. He is not bragging, it is just the truth!

This Father’s Day, think about your father, your Dad and then really think about having or starting a relationship with God, your Father in Heaven. Life is too short to waste it on stuff, our relationship with our family, both here on earth and the family that we have in Heaven, is far more important than is given credit in our culture today. Give both of your Fathers your attention so your relationship with them doesn’t have to end. Think about it.


Dad, what are you doing?

You may or may not know where Father’s Day came from, so I looked it up and found it. It came about because of a girl named Sonora Smart Dodd. In 1909, she was sitting in church listening to a Mother’s Day sermon when she had the idea of Father’s Day. She had been raised by her father after her mother’s death, so she wanted her father to know how special he was to her. To make a long story short, twenty-five years later, through her efforts President Calvin Coolidge designated the third Sunday of June as Father’s Day, then President Lyndon Johnson declared it as well but it took President Richard Nixon to sign the proclamation and make it permanent.

In God’s Word, there is one father that we know of who doesn’t have anything to say and yet he helped to raise and teach and nurture the Son of God. I am speaking of Joseph. In the story of Jesus’ birth, Mary and the angels have big parts to play; the wise men who are seeking the Child are prominent in the story too. Joseph is told that the Child is from God and that it is OK to accept Mary as his wife. Later on he is warned in a dream to take the child and flee to escape Herod’s soldiers.

Nowhere in the story do we hear from Joseph. I suppose if you are told that you are to be the step-father of the Son of God that would take your breath away. But there are many things about Joseph that we can only get from other scripture. Joseph loved Mary, which is what a father is supposed to do. Even though he thought she didn’t love him.

When he was making plans to divorce Mary, God showed him the divine plan in a dream: In a dream an angel appeared to Joseph, “Joseph, thou son of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife, because the baby in her womb is of the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a Son, and you will name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins” (Matt. 1:20-21). “When Joseph woke up, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded and took Mary as his wife. But he did not have relations with her until her son was born; and Joseph named him Jesus.” (Matt. 1:24, 25).

How much better would the world be if every father took responsibility like Joseph? He understood what God expected of him, and he was ready to obey! Even if the village that they lived in considered the child to be a child of adultery. Joseph believed God, obeyed God and accepted the responsibility that God had given him.

About fifty years ago, seventeen percent of the children born were raised apart from their fathers. In 1990, that number was up to 36%. Today, nearly half of all children in the U.S. are raised without a father in the home.

You know, in many ways, we as fathers and husbands, are to be the leaders of our team. The team being the family, we are expected to be the head of the household in all areas. That includes financial, religious, personal, etc. Every part of our lives and the life of our family, we do not control but we are to guide and help and nurture to the best of our ability and the ability that God has given us. That is our responsibility as fathers. We are to be like God as much as is humanly possible, just don’t ACT like a god!

Your wife will take care of that! She will bring you down a notch or two if you do!

Joseph was a devout Jew and made sure to do everything according to the Lord’s teachings in the Law of Moses to the best of his ability. He sought God and led his family to the Passover festival every year.

I read once that “A child is not likely to find a father in God unless he finds something of God in his father.” (Austin L. Sorensen) Seeing God in their father is a child’s best way to come to know God as their Father. Let that settle a bit in your mind and think on it. Who else would a child look to if not his or her father? We all claim, if we know Jesus, that God is our Father but can you feel Him? Can you touch Him?

Those sensations of touch are necessary for children and only our earthly fathers can give us a hug or hold your hand or pull the fish that you caught off the hook. We are supposed to be the spiritual leader in our family, like the priests in the Old Testament. If your child sees you reading the Bible, then they will see that you think it is important, especially when the wisdom that you gain from it is applied in your life, to every part of your life.

You are able to instill faith in your children. You are able to show them what a loving father looks like and acts like. You can give them the ability to trust and depend on their Father in heaven, but you can’t give your children something that you don’t have. Before they will see God in you, you have to let Him into your heart and your life. He has to be the top priority and they have to see you seeking Him. When you do, your children will see it; your grandchildren will see it. They will know that it is important, that He is important to you and to them.

A preacher once asked some preschoolers to draw pictures of God. He was going to use them as illustrations for his sermon. At the end of the class, they came up with rainbows and men with big hands. His daughter told him that she didn’t know what God looked like, so she drew a picture of him instead.

Joseph was a quiet man in scripture. Strong in his faith, yet we never heard him speak. His example teaches all of us a lesson in righteousness, responsibility and a lesson in religion. God is our Heavenly Father and He wants nothing more than for you to be a part of His family.