By Joan Clayton: PNT columnist
Every day can be Father’s Day
Who can know a father’s love for his child? A true father will move heaven and earth for his child in need. His love extends beyond all earthly experiences and when it is all said and done you will hear him say, “That’s my boy,” or “That’s my girl,” beaming with pride. The characteristics of great fathers are many and I’ve used the letters to stand for those virtues:
F stands for faithfulness. A faithful father loves his children and wife and leads them by example. He is there for the family and gives support with his time in order to show interest in family activities. He disciplines with love and patience. So does our Heavenly Father. “The LORD has mercy on those who respect him, as a father has mercy on his children” (Psalm 103:13 NCV).
A is for Adoration. He adores his family and tells them so. He recognizes his wife and children are prized possessions and he treats them accordingly. He is not shy in saying “I love you.” He is free with hugs even when his children become adults. “Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward” (Psalm 127:3 KJV). Children are gifts from heaven.
T is for Tender. A father understands that harshness can wound and he handles discipline with patience, tenderness, kindness and love. He can be tough, but tender and deep down is a love that cannot be quenched. “And, fathers do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4 NRSV). I’m thankful God doesn’t give me what I deserve, but is merciful to me.
H is for Honest. A father’s honesty is “caught” by his children, for they are forever watching and they will want to walk in his shoes. The father makes the path for his children. “…Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody” (Romans 12:17 NIV). Honesty is always valued, in children and in grownups.
E is for Enthusiastic. Fathers with enthusiasm make life exciting, even if it’s just a simple backyard activity. Doing things together builds solid relationships and will be long remembered by the family. “…the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10 TLB). Enthusiasm makes life delicious!
R is for Responsible. Fathers take responsibility in many areas and they take it with humility knowing the fate of the family depends upon him. He leads them in the “Light.” “But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God” (John 3:21 NIV). For a blessed life, think big with faith and courage.
Fathers, I salute you. By building your family you build America. Someone has said, “As the family goes, so goes the nation.” How true. We all need you. On this Father’s Day may you be blessed indeed. Thank you for making wonderful memories for those you love.
Kallie, our 10-year-old granddaughter, wrote the following poem to her daddy on Father’s Day. I reprint it here with her permission:
“My Daddy, I love you so much for all you do. You make the world better and you help me with homework too. I feel safe when you’re around, and I thank the Lord for putting you on the ground. You make me feel better just talking to me. You’re the best Daddy, can’t you see! I love you Daddy!”
Kallie’s daddy framed this poem and it has a prominent place in his office.
Is it any wonder it touched his heart — that is the heart of a father.
Our Heavenly Father’s heart is touched by our praise to him too.
Touch his heart by your love. With him, every day is Father’s Day!