Being a Father

We just honored all the fathers yesterday. My husband tells me it’s really not a big deal. His own father passed away almost 30 years ago, so for him, it probably isn’t much of a big deal. I have a hard time dealing with father’s day. I love my dad, but I don’t have a relationship with him. I tried for all of my youth and into my adulthood, but it just never happened. I know he thinks he cares for me, but he has never shown it, at least not in the way you see in the Hallmark cards or how my friends say their dads were always with them in the big moments of their lives.

My husband is a pretty good dad. He worked a lot throughout the children’s childhood, but still tried to find time to come watch their ballgames or take them fishing. Once he made it through his health crisis years ago, he made more time for them and stopped catering to his clients so much. Now, he and the kids have been through some rough waters, but they have worked it out together and continue to do so. The relationship I see developing between them is special and will last forever.

So yesterday, I spent the day with my husband, doing what he wanted to do. I sent my father a card with a note, but I didn’t call him. This is a difficult situation because he has just been diagnosed with cancer, not a life-threatening stage or location at this time, but his wife seems to have already started digging his grave. She told me that “he’s lived a good life”. What? I keep thinking of Monty Python….”I’m not dead yet!” I think this is why I have a hard time continuing to try to pursue a relationship with him. He loves her and she loves him, but she has her own way of thinking and to contradict her in any way is to beg for the consequences of her anger. So, I stay away, because I have a hard time staying quiet when I’m around her.

I know I’ve made some poor choices when it comes to my earthly father, but my Heavenly Father is guiding me to make it right. We may never have the ideal relationship, but I have to remember that he has the ability to make choices, too. No matter what happens, I have the Ultimate Father to give me strength and wisdom to choose according to His Will and not my own selfish will.

There, I’ve said it. I’ve not been able to put into words how this situation affects me until now. I hate it but I don’t know how to overcome it yet. Funny. This isn’t what I started to write about, but it’s tying into what I had originally had on my heart to write.

Psalm 68:5 says “A father of the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy habitation.”

Isaiah 63:16 “Doubtless You are our Father, though Abraham was ignorant of us, and Israel does not acknowledge us. You, O Lord, are our Father, our Redeemer from Everlasting is Your Name.”
Matthew 23:9 “Do not call anyone on earth you father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.”

These verses help guide me through my own situation and help me stay focused on my true Father. Everyone else can deny who God is, but He will never cease to be my Father. The take home point for me is He proves His love for me everyday in His Word and the daily interactions I get with Him. The simple things that most people might not recognize or appreciate.

Deuteronomy 31:6 “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”

This promise along with the ability to call Him my Father gives me the peace I need to overcome my challenges. When I focus on Him as my Provider and Creator, He opens my spirit to recognize the simplicity of the truth. The truth is, everything here on earth is a test. The choices we make reflect our hearts and when our hearts are focused on Him, then the choices we make point back to Him as well. He can guide us if we allow Him, but even when we don’t allow Him, He will still be there when we need Him. We may have to endure some consequences of our own choices, but He will give us the ability to endure if we let go and rely on Him.

That’s what being a Father is. He guides us, teaches us and loves us unconditionally.

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