When I was a little girl, I always looked at my dad as a strong protector, a defender of his family, a fixer of broken things, an all around hard working man.
I remember each night when my mama would be starting supper, that daddy would be home soon! As soon as the truck pulled into the driveway, I would run excitedly to the window and watch as he made his way up to the house. As soon as he would open the door I would run, squealing "DADDYYYYYYY!!!" and he would scoop me up into a bear hug and carry me into the kitchen.

As I grew up my outward enthusiasm waned but still, each evening I always felt a sense of safety in knowing that he was home.

I know his involvement with our local American Legion and community kept him busy a lot of the time. There were many nights, as I grew older, mom and I ate dinner and kept his plate warm until he got home. He's told me that he regrets being away so much.
 I will say this, He never missed a school play, concert, dance recital etc....  When I cheered in high school, he never missed a game. I always knew where to look in the stands and he would be there. Sometimes in his work clothes but, never absent.

Fond memories.

My first trip behind the wheel on my sixteenth birthday. I remember him tossing me the keys to their almost brand new car. "Let's take a ride!" he said. I remember being so nervous,  I had a death grip on the steering wheel and I drove 25 mph in a 55mph zone. He kept glancing over at me and smiling "you know, you can go a little faster honey." he'd said.

The day he walked me down the isle his eyes were a bit red and moist but mostly, I'd say he was proud. He had told me several years before that day, he really liked the boy, who would one day be my hubs. If I ever got a chance to date him, I should.  Because I had his blessing. It was only a few weeks later, the hubs asked me on a date. Who knew dad would get his wish and then some?
When life got a bit bumpy, Dad let me vent and cry on his shoulder. He only gave me one bit of advice but backed it up by saying "whatever you do, I'll always be behind you 100%". To know your daddy is in your corner even in your darkest of days, even if you made some pretty big mistakes in this life, that speaks volumes of a fathers love.
The day our son was born, I heard he was pacing the floor at the hospital and kept asking the nurses station if I was OK. Finally, they allowed me to see a few visitors. I had just had my epidural and wasn't in any pain. The bad thing was the side effect where I was shaking like a leaf. He kept asking if I was OK. Through chattering teeth I let him know I was good. After our son was born, they were the first to come back and see him. I've never seen my parents smile so big and proud! The nurse allowed him to help me wobble out of the bed to the wheelchair so they could get me to my room. I remember him having to swoop in and catch me so I didn't fall. He brought us pizza for dinner while we were still in the hospital and I remember him sitting on the edge of the bed talking about his grandson. I could see him absolutely swelling with pride.

All of these moments came before his biggest moment in this life, the day he was saved.

Nowadays, we can talk about Jesus and God's timing, without it feeling like a one sided conversation. Even though I've been a Christian longer than he has, I'm amazed at how much I've learned from him! The best part is, knowing I don't have to worry about his salvation anymore. One day, we will be able to meet again in heaven. That we both know for sure!

When I look back on my life so far, It's the qualities of our heavenly father that I love so much about my earthly father. Strong protector, defender of our family, fixer of all things, and a love that runs ever so deep for his children.

Love you dad.

Happy Father's Day!


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