Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

Today was a good day for me and I hope it was for all the fathers out there.
My brother took me out to the woods where we acted like kids and rode 4 wheelers for a few hours.
It seems my body doesn't like this kind of activity the way it used to, but I had a blast.
I came home looking like I work in a coal mine and sore from head to toe.

So, for me today was a little selfish but I don't think anyone suffered for me taking a few hours for myself.

Fathers day has been kind of bittersweet for me for most of my life. My father and I had a pretty bad relationship and he died when I was young so we didn't resolve any issues that we had with each other. I was very relieved when my dad passed away and I decided that no one would tell me what to do from that time forward.
In some ways it was good in others it was a self destructive path that I stayed on for many years.
I was angry at my dad for the way he treated me and I was angry for him not being there for me. I was angry at the whole world sometimes.
I tried to live my life the best way I knew how(or did what ever I felt like ). I got married , had a child ( I was only 18 when Tim was born) and tried to take care of them the best I could.
It took me until 1997 to forgive my father and let go of the anger that I harbored towards him.
When I did, it was like a 2000 lb. weight was lifted off of me. I found that it really is a lot of work to stay angry.
Sometimes now I even miss him, I didn't miss him for 16 years and then suddenly I was able to give myself permission to wish he was here.
And today I wish he was here to see my sons. To meet my wife and be as taken by her as I am.
I know now that just like me, he was doing the best he could. Sometimes that's not good enough.
I am sorry for imparting some of that legacy on to my children, I hope that they can see a better way sooner than I did. I don't think that we have to make the same mistakes our parents made. Not that all mistakes are even bad, but I don't want my boys to think that violence is the answer to anything. I don't want them to live inside a little box that they are afraid to move outside.
I now have hope, I didn't used to have that.
And I wish my dad could see that. I wish he was here so I could tell him Happy Father's Day Dad.
I miss you dad, sometimes.


Robin Goodfellow said...

That is absolutely beautiful. Happy belated Father's Day to you too. Great blog, BTW.

I had a good father. Still do. But, conversely, I spent almost 30 years "wiping the face of my dad off of God." He was a good role model and he pointed me always to Christ. But as I grew up, I found out I couldn't be as perfect as I thought my father was. I rebelled, as we all do, to the authoritarian ideal, precisely because I knew he would forgive me and I laughed at him for it.

Now, I have come full 'round and am a father myself. I realize now that my father didn't try to be perfect before me, just as good as he could be to the Lord he loves. But now that I am a grown up (in body only, mind you) I see how very imperfect my father is. And I love him all the more for it now than I ever thought I could. We only have one perfect Father. And in this revelation I have come to see that I am a pilgrim on the same journey as my old man, one with whom I can share my failures and mistakes, sins and fallen-ness and he can share his with me. That is the mystery of confession - becoming transparent before one another, esp. our children, so that they don't mistake our faces for God, but that they may see Him clearly through us.

Robin Goodfellow said...

oh, I'm James from Kingdom Grace, BTW

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