Father’s Day, a time to think on and reflect about special times spent with dads and other “father figures” in our lives. I was blessed to have not only a great dad in my life, but a great step-dad and a great father-in-law as well. These special men have all run ahead to Heaven and left me behind to share their legacies with my kids and grandkids. I just hope I don’t lose the richness of the lives they led in my retelling of stories about them.
All of these special men shared a place in time, born after WWI, living through the Great Depression, experiencing the ardent patriotism during WWII and in the case of my dad fighting far away in the South Pacific. They were all heroes in my eyes, men who worked hard, raised families and did what they could to help anyone around them who might be in need. None were famous, wealthy, or powerful yet they made my life richer and better by being a part of it. The greatest gift to me was them spending time with me. Simple conversations had when we were fishing, or watering the lawn, or cooking up something special in the kitchen…just taking time to be present in my life.
I challenge dads today to be present with their kids; turn off the TV, put down the video game controller, and turn off your phone, and really talk to your kids. Ask them about their favorite character in a movie or book. Share a funny incident from your childhood. Go outside and look at clouds, and stars and satellites. Ask them about what they dream to be. Give the gift of your time and undivided attention. Your risk is small and your reward is great, your life will be made richer and your children will know they are important and that they are loved and that they have worth. Time passes quickly, grab it while you can. Happy Father’s Day!