A Father’s Day Message

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It has been 70 plus years since I was under the direct discipline of my father. And yet, I remember very vividly his counsel by way of actions.

With a limited education – only six grades – he lived his years honestly and with integrity.

I learned from him. Give an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay. Be thrifty. As much as possible, stay out of debt. Help others in need. Don’t be ashamed to wave our flag. Be patriotic. Attend church. Let your actions speak louder than your words.

Not bad for an uneducated man, born in 1903. I’ve tried to emulate him.

I read somewhere that one goal in life is to learn. We do that by looking around us at all times and listening to others. In that way we receive knowledge and understanding.

In some ways our lives are shaped by heredity. Many reputable psychologists also add our environment. Nature and nurture.

There’s an old saying that says, “A knife is sharpened on stone. Steel is sharpened by fire. But people are sharpened (learn) by other people.”

An impediment that we often face is human discouragement. It is easy to get down on life. A phrase in a novel I recently read said, “No man is lost while yet he lives.”

I like what Jon Stewart said the other day. “These are tough times but they are not the end times.” No discouragement there.

Recently, Dr. Lowell Linden used a figure of speech in his pastoral prayer, when he prayed for the Divine to help us when we are caught in LIFE’S FISHNET. Caught without hope of getting out. God answers that prayer.

It seems to me as I observe the human situation-including myself-we can do just about anything we put our minds to. It has been said, “Only the weak blame parents, their race, their times, lack of good fortune, or the queries of fate.”

But, as I recall, the author also reminded the readers that we each have the power within to make today different from yesterday.

There is an old Chinese proverb that reminds us that a journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. Actions must follow ideas and thoughts. A good synonym for actions is DEEDS.

With due respect for my Democrat affiliation, I was most impressed with the words Republican Senators Rubio of Florida and Paul of Kentucky who both spoke of the great heritage of America. Our freedom must be respected and worked for. It is not automatic. I liked what they said. Actions do speak louder than words.

Louis L’Amour was a marvelous novelist. He was also a distinctive and persuasive philosopher. For example, he has one of his characters say, “The goods of this world are soon lost. Fire, storm, thieves, and war are always with us, but what is stored in the mind is ours forever.”

This statement is very reminiscent of Jesus’ words about hoarding (laying up) treasures where bugs and rust destroy or thieves steal them. Rather, we should preserve eternal values in heaven. Where is it located?

Jesus said the Kingdom of God (heaven) was within us. What better place than “the mind.” As L’Amour said, “it is forever.”

On June 19, we will celebrate Father’s Day. It is usually placed between vacations and graduation. Yet, fathers, whether gone or alive, should get our attention. My Dad has been gone since 1963. However, I still remember him and his advice.

I have two suggestions. First, if he is alive, verbalize your love and appreciation to him. If he doesn’t live close, call him and express your love and appreciation.

My second suggestion, if he has passed on. It is based upon my personal theology. I believe that God hears my prayers and yours. I believe my Dad is with the Lord in Heaven.

Therefore, I ask God to share with my Dad how much I love him and appreciate everything he did for me. What I am today he taught me. I hope that he is proud of me.

Amen. Selah. So be it.

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