Father’s Day For Those I Love

Gentle man
down on your knees,
entreat your Lord
with silent word.

Gentle man
down on your knees,
in front of those
who fill the rows.

Gentle man
down on your knees,
to serve mankind
none left behind.

Gentle man
down on your knees,
you find His way
to start your day.

Gentle men
who’ve touched my life
as daughter, student,
mother, wife.

Other Father’s Day posts:

Father’s Day Without My Father

In My Father’s House

Linking with:

In My Father’s House – TOYS Linkup

It is the dawn of the second anniversary of my father’s death. It will be the third Father’s Day without him. I still remember how surreal that phone call was. I had just laid down in bed. My father had been fighting an infection, and had a doctor’s appointment day after next. He had no history of medical problems. It seemed as though it might be the beginning of something bigger…and it was much bigger and faster than we thought. He laid down that night and died.

But what his artistry created still lives. The loons trill and I am far away; far away from grown up responsibilities, new jobs and writing deadlines. Instead I am inside my father’s imagination. Because he imagined a peaceful place of solace, and it spilled forth in the form of a home.

For most of his career, this real live apprentice of Frank Lloyd Wright gave the gift of his architectural skills to help non-profit organizations. His artist’s paintbrush was used on the canvas of other people’s dreams. But with one last stroke of his brush, he created a home that he designed and built for my mother and himself. It is a showcase of the artist that had been pushed aside for a lifetime; pushed aside in order to serve us with a paycheck, in order to serve others in their dreams, in order to serve God with His purposes and plans.

He got to spend one calendar year in the home he dreamed of.

Looking out of windows he watched leafy shadows dappled on green grass, and he saw everything explode into golden yellow like autumn fireworks.

He delighted in the heaviest snow in years as he viewed a real winter wonderland. He got excited with expectation when green pushed through rocky soil…but he never saw that summer’s life even though he fully expected to.

The light falls across the room, just the way he planned for it to and time stands still. In the freeze frame I am able to take inventory and really see what my life amounts to. Most of what I thought was important a moment ago, seems unimportant. All that matters is now, this holy moment. A holy moment provided by my both my fathers, both of whom are in Heaven.

And it’s a little heaven on earth. A preview of mansions to come.

When my parents married, he went on ahead of Mother, from Omaha to Chicago, to prepare a home for her. Before my father died, he prepared a beautiful dwelling for my mother to live in for the rest of her years in beauty and comfort. Now he has gone on before us to the Heavenly country, and I am certain that he and Jesus are preparing a place for us there as well.

It is frightening how a person can be here today and gone tomorrow…but my father has left a piece of himself that will be remembered for years to come, even after we are long gone. It makes me wonder about every house, who built it and why? Was the house built for love? My father’s house was.The walls were built with love and the life lived within them was built in love. And it all makes me wonder, what will remain of me when I am gone?

Won’t you join me on Fridays for a new series and linkup called, “Take Off Your Shoes, You’re On Holy Ground!”? Each week a post will be shared about the significance of a place and you will be able to share as well!! Just 1) Write a post about how a place has ministered to you. 2) Add your post to the linkup. 3) Add the button to your post. 4)Visit and encourage your neighbors!


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Father’s Day Without My Father – A Year of “Firsts”

A year ago, my father suddenly passed away.  He went for a walk that Saturday morning.  No one knew it would be his last walk. I saw him the day before.  He drove me to the bus station, assuring me that he was just fine.  He wasn’t.

As I reflect on the past year, it was filled with firsts.  The first Thanksgiving without my dad.  The first turkey, not carved by him.  The first Thanksgiving prayer without his cough.  He always coughed during his lengthy prayers.  I used to think it was kind of annoying.  Now, I think it was charming.

The first Christmas without Daddy.  Gifts were rather sparse, as his income was the largest contributor to our family’s gifts.  He always made a handmade card.  There was always a misspelled word.

My first birthday without my father.  No Colonial Fannie May’s.  No Mom and Dad coming for a day or two.

His first birthday without himself…:).

Today, June 17th, is my parent’s 44th wedding anniversary.  He wasn’t here to celebrate.  He never really celebrated anyway, except for a another beautiful handmade card with another misspelled word in it.

There are days when I am sure that there must be a special telephone I can use in order to talk to him.  I’d like to ask him what it was like.  To die.  What Heaven is like.  I wanted to ask his advice for my son and what college he should attend.  I still want to ask his advice about my Prodigal.

He was a holy man.  A quiet man.  If you woke up early enough, you’d find him reading his Bible every morning.  He and my mother prayed together. Every. morning.  A man of discipline.  A man of wisdom.

This Father’s Day will be the second without him, as he died the night before Father’s Day last year. I miss him much more today than I did last Father’s Day.  Last Father’s Day, I was dreaming a horrible nightmare.  Now, I’m awake.  I hear the birds again and I’m allowed to cry.

Joining the Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood Tuesday linky.