I love the quote attributed to Mark Twain who said about his father:
“When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.”
I must confess my father keeps getting smarter and smarter as well. I’ll never forget how brilliant he became when I had children of my own.
Father’s Day waits just around the corner, and I am looking forward to it on many levels. I look forward to giving my dad a call on Sunday afternoon to try to put into words my gratitude for his influence in my life, and I too look forward to the calls, texts, and Facebook posts from my girls.
I will never forget the moment I held tiny little Kalie in my arms and I became a dad. Was I ready? No, absolutely not. Was I excited? I stood there speechless with a big silly smile on my face.
We live in a day when many are ringing their hands in desperation over the plight or our nation and civilization as we know it. Greater minds than mine spend countless hours planning and theorizing on how to reverse the course of our nation as we plunge into the future.
Often the answers point toward better schools and neighborhoods. Experts believe we need better “villages” and methods to raise our children. I must confess I may be simple minded, but I believe the answer still rests in the home and God’s plan for every boy and girl to have a father at home makes a great deal of sense.
Yes, I believe good godly fathers make great nations by pouring their lives into their children.
Paul challenged the fathers of his day saying:
Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4 NIV)
Sunday School and church have their place in the moral development of a child, but there can be no substitute for the godly influence of a man on his children.
In the Old Testament one of the terms used for this vital connection was the word “blessing.” In a formal life-giving way fathers passed on their blessings to their children. In our day, I know countless children young and old who yearn and long for their father’s blessing.
Coach Jim Valvano, who coached a NCAA national championship basketball team, captured it best with his observation when he said:
“My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give to another person—he believed in me.”
Dads on this special day never under estimate your value to our world. We need you now more than ever!