Father’s Day is here. They say… and I believe… that the best gift a father can give his children is to LOVE their mother. This is an undeniable truism. We all yearn for love, security, consistency, stability and trust. For me, as one of those who have had this experience, it’s one of the treasures in my life… even more so, it is my foundation.
Upon this base, I’ve had an unwavering sense that life can be good. The world is a safe place in the most tender regions. I’ve seen it in action. Did I say perfect? No, I did not. But, I have witnessed one who, without question and without hesitation, has lived a life of love and devotion to the wife of his youth.
We married off our precious first born this past weekend. It was a wonderful weekend, culminating in a magical wedding day as we gathered after a deluge of rain, with paper towels in hand, and watched two dizzy love-birds, with gravity and sincerity, commit their lives one to another, under a flower-infused canopy of a single tree.
I watched my baby girl stepped into womanhood in a single moment. The groom bent at the waist, upon his first glimpse of her as she stood at the end of the grassy aisle, and came up weeping with joy as she approached him. They exchanged vows and took communion as their first act as husband and wife, committing their way to the Lord.
My sweet father waited for them at the altar and charged them in the way of God as they stood together anticipating the moment that they would commit their lives to each other. As he spoke words of wisdom from his life experience, as he spoke words of truth from the very word of God and as he charged them to place their trust in the ONE who would empower them to live out their marriage, I listened with a peaceful heart knowing that lifetimes of love, dating back to my grandparents and before, would buoy them and cheer them on. This is the legacy that precedes them. This is mine, as well.
At the reception, during the father/daughter dance, I searched for my dad. I wanted to take his hand and hold him close and show him how much he means to me. I had to break in on my sister, who got to him first. I know she shares with me the pride we have always felt to be on his arm, no matter where we were. But, she generously shared him with me and I got to stand beside him again. I don’t take those moments for granted. I thanked him for such a wonderful ceremony and told him, again, that I love him.
Dear Daddy… happy Father’s Day. I honor you this weekend as my beloved Dad. How do I thank you for a lifetime of love and sweetness? How could I ever repay you for the devotion you’ve shown to Mom… that was as sure as the sunrise? My gift back to you is to stay true to my Lord and to my family in honor of all that you’ve poured into my life. Thank you for, when given the choice, choosing to love.