I am blessed. I had a great dad. A man of integrity, he was a hard worker, loved his family and always put us first. He and my mom took us to church and Sunday School. We grew up rooted in the Word. Dad loved being a grandpa. Proud of the fact that he never changed a diaper, he would do anything else for his grandchildren.
Husband Dave was the same way. He took to being a father like some men take to golf. No matter what happened in our lives, he was always there for our son, Ethan, and for me. He loved both our families and would do anything for them. His faith only grew stronger as he got older. As a father, he always hit a hole in one.
I’m blessed with two brothers who are wonderful dads and grandpas. I admire the traits they’ve received from our dad and the legacy of love they’ve passed on to their families.
The Lord has given me wonderful friends who are either married to amazing fathers or are great fathers themselves. I’m blessed to know men of integrity who love the Lord and strive to follow in his footsteps. Good men who try to be the best for those they love.
Not everyone’s as blessed as me.
Some people grow up without a father or a father figure. Some would be better off if they’d never known their father. Some are afraid to become fathers because they fear they’ll end up being just like their own dad. Some quietly carry brokenness and despair in their hearts like heavy suitcases that only weigh more as the years pass by.
If that’s you, I’m sorry that life has been hard. I’m sorry you didn’t receive a father’s love like you deserve. Father’s Day must be so hard for you. The hoopla. The celebrations. The TV commercials portraying perfect dads with perfect families. It must seem like everyone else but you has the best dad in the world. Cry out to our Father in Heaven. He’s not some distant God who ignores you. He won’t hurt you or leave you an orphan. He loves you with an everlasting love.
“The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing” (Zephaniah 3:17).
The Lord rejoices over you with loud singing. You’re precious to him. He doesn’t whisper his enthusiasm about you. It’s loud and unrestrained, joyful singing. He’s not absent. In the book of James it says if we draw near to God and he will draw near to us. Don’t be afraid to draw near to the Father. He is love.
Maybe your life has been filled with disappointments. Maybe you want to be a father but that hasn’t happened. Maybe you’ve never found the love of your life. Maybe your children are distant and uncaring. There are many maybes. Whatever your maybe is, cry out to our Heavenly Father who hears our hearts with discerning ears. He hears the words that are not spoken. He sees the grief and sadness we never voice. He collects our tears in a bottle. He cares for us.
Maybe you’re missing your dad this Father’s Day. Or your husband. Or your son. Or your best friend. Or your brother. Or someone who’s like a father to you. Gone too soon because you weren’t ready to let them go. Because you still need them.
Tell the Lord how you feel. Ask for his help. Pray that he sends others who can help you. Others who understand what you’re experiencing because they’ve walked a similar road. Don’t let bitterness and anger take root in your soul. They’re like weeds that become quickly out of control and take control of your life.
Romans 10:13 says that “whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Thank you to all who’ve stepped up and loved a child. You may be a traditional father. You may be a mother, a grandpa or a grandma, a foster parent, a step parent, a friend, a neighbor or someone else. Whoever you are, thank you for making a difference in another’s life. Happy Father’s Day to you.
Happy Father’s Day to the greatest father of all, our Heavenly Father. “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are (1 John 3:1).
Kathy Yoder is a devotional writer. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.