Father’s day is next weekend. Be sure and take care of your father next weekend, and if he’s no longer with you, take a moment to reflect on all the things he did for you. One of my friends posted that thought in their facebook status a week or so ago, so I saved it. I saved it because it occurred to me that I have never taken the time to express in specific terms all of the things he did for me. Here is my list.
My father taught me how to work. That is the first thought that came to mind. My father maintained an impeccable work ethic and he in turn expected his kids to follow his cues. Consequently I learned to work hard at a fairly young age. I spent part of the summer after my 8th grade year painting the trim on the house with very little guidance.
My father was not a racist. My dad was born in the South in 1925. Many people of his generation were very racist. (Including my mother!) I have never been inclined toward being prejudiced, and I attribute that to the example that my father set.
My father was fair with people. My dad really felt that everyone should get a fair shake. As an employer, he tried to treat everyone the same. He had very high expectations, but his supervision and leadership were delivered in a spirit of fairness. I don’t know if I have inherited that quality or not. But I know I was not short on example in that department.
My father encouraged me to develop my talents. When I was entering the 9th grade, I had no clue what to take for elective courses. My dad urged me to take speech and debate. He told me I was naturally talented toward such endeavors. And I so I did….In fact, my bachelor’s degree is in Speech Communications.
My father had a good reputation as a businessman. Unfortunately I rarely encounter people who knew my dad anymore. But when I do I am so thankful that their comments are very complimentary regarding his sense of business ethics. He was honest and he treated people with integrity.
My father was not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. Some of his poor choices in terms of taking care of his health led to a premature death at age 52. I was 15 years old at the time. Over the years I think I have focused too much on the negative attributes of the home I grew up in. I realize now how much grace I need as a father! I am very aware of my own imperfections. I am thankful for a friend prompting all of us to take a few moments to reflect on the things our fathers did for us. What about you? What did your dad do for you?