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Musings and Memories

Happy Father’s Day!

Doug Dezotell
Posted 6/18/22

Happy Father’s Day Weekend to all the Daddys out there in T-G Land!

One of the things I remember looking back when my children were little is their constant requests for glasses of water or …

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Musings and Memories

Happy Father’s Day!

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Happy Father’s Day Weekend to all the Daddys out there in T-G Land!

One of the things I remember looking back when my children were little is their constant requests for glasses of water or milk at bedtime. It was really their attempt to prolong the time before the lights went out.

Like this…

“Daddy, Daddy, can I have another glass of water please?” “But I’ve given you 10 glasses of water already!” “Yes, but the bedroom is still on fire!”

Oops!

Over the years I have heard it said that fathers were the head of the household. Preachers preach it. And Bible teachers teach it. And a lot of men try to adhere to that.

But…

One evening a little girl and her parents were sitting around the table eating supper. The little girl said, “Daddy, you’re the boss, aren't you?” Her Daddy smiled, pleased, and said “Yes.” The little girl continued “That's because Mama put you in charge, right?”

Oh my, what a wise little girl…

…At the end of the age when all the believers were standing in line waiting to get into Heaven, the Angel Gabriel appeared and said, “I want all the men to form two lines. One line will be for the men who were the true heads of their households. The other line will be for the men who were dominated by their wives.”

Gabriel continued, “And now we need all of the women to report to Mary and Martha on the other side of the gate.”

The women left while the men hurriedly formed two lines. The line of men who were dominated by their wives was seemingly unending. The line of men who were the true head of their households had just one man standing in it.

Gabriel said to the first line, “You men ought to be ashamed of yourselves. You were appointed to be the heads of your households and you have not fulfilled your purpose. Of all of you, there is only one man who obeyed.”

Then Gabriel turned to the lone man and asked, “How did you come to be in this line?”

The man replied, “This is where my wife told me to stand.”

Over the years I’ve learned that there are two very important words to make for a happy marriage. And I’ve shared this advice with many young men getting ready to wed their brides.

Those two golden words are … “Yes, Dear!”

One of the nice things about being a parent as our children grow up is pay-back…

… When Jimmy was 16, he finally got his driver’s license. In order to celebrate the special day, the whole family went out to the driveway and climbed into the car to enjoy Jimmy’s first official drive through town.

However, his dad went to the back seat, and sat right behind his son. When Jimmy saw his father behind him, he said “Dad, you must be tired of sitting in the front seat after teaching me how to drive all these months. Right?”

“Nope,” Jimmy’s dad said. “I'm going to sit back here and kick the back of your seat while you drive, just like you’ve been doing to me for the last 16 years!”

…I have watched with a wide array of emotions as my three children have become adults. Now two of them have become parents themselves. And that has made me a proud grandfather…Papa!

…The little girl was sitting in her grandfather’s lap as he read her a goodnight story. From time to time, she would take her eyes off the book and reach up to touch his wrinkled cheek.

Then she would stroke her own cheek, then her grandfather’s again.

Finally she said, “Papa, did God make you?”

“Yes, sweetheart,” he answered, “God made me a long time ago.”

Then she said, “Papa, did God make me too?”

“Yes, indeed. He sure did honey,” he assured her. “God made you just a little while ago.”

“Oh” she said. Feeling both of their faces again, she observed, “God’s getting better at it now isn’t He?”

… My face is wrinkled, and my hair is white. And I don’t get around as easily as I did when I was younger. My heart may be weak, but it is filled with precious memories and lots and lots of love. Love for my Heavenly Father, love for my wonderful wife, the mother of my children.

My heart is filled with love for my three adult children and my three precious granddaughters. And it is filled with such wonderful memories of my mother and my father.

I read the following story, and it is worth sharing with you today…

“Near midnight, my wife and I were driving home from the University of Illinois where our son Randy was a junior. My wife was asleep in the passenger seat next to me.

“I headed north, wondering what on earth had possessed us to take the afternoon off to make the trek to campus and back, a six-hour round trip driving through the small towns dotting Highway 47. All for nothing.

“For weeks Randy had been telling me how much fun he was having playing intramural coed flag football. Maybe it was his talk of diving catches and trick plays, but I’d felt this sudden urge to cheer him on, like we had in high school.

“Just several hours earlier my wife and I had met him at the field. It was a crisp fall evening—perfect football weather. I was pumped.

“Randy introduced us to his teammates. ‘You really came all this way just to see us play?’ they asked.

“The cheering section consisted of my wife, me and an injured player on crutches. But we didn’t mind. We watched the kids stretch and warm up, run through some drills and then...there was some sort of delay.

“Randy ran over. ‘The other team had to forfeit,’ he said. ‘They don’t have enough players.’

“I tried to hide my disappointment. No big deal, right? Unless you’d just driven three hours to get there.

“We took Randy out for lunch. That was nice, but I’d had my heart set on seeing him in action. I’d wanted to cheer for my son.

“Now, returning home, slowing the car to a crawl through the town of Yorkville, I couldn’t help thinking that the whole idea had been foolish. I was behind on work. I really needed to clean out the garage.

“I thought of all the T-ball games and soccer matches, band concerts and science fairs I’d gone to over the years for our five children.

“Once my wife and I even snuck into Randy’s English class to see him perform in a skit. We had been the only parents there that day too. I’d worked hard to be a supportive dad, but was I trying too hard?

“Ahead I saw a bridge crossing over the Fox River. A distant memory stirred...from back when I was a Boy Scout. Every fall our troop made a two-day, 40-mile canoe journey down the Fox.

“There was one year I would never forget.

“My dad dropped my brother Mark and me at the launch, made sure our life vests were snug and said goodbye as our flotilla set off. I plunged my paddle into the water and pulled hard, then lifted and stroked again. Mark, in front, did the same.

“Before long we had a good rhythm going. ‘I wish Dad could see us,’ I thought.

“About a mile downriver we came to a bridge. I looked up and there he was. Dad, standing right in the middle of the span. He didn’t shout instructions or do anything embarrassing. He simply waved until we passed underneath. I looked back and he was gone. Huh? Was I just imagining him?

“But several miles later, at the next overpass, there he was again. And the one after that. And the next.

“It turned into a game. The whole troop began looking for him. Every time we rounded a bend that day someone would shout, “There’s your dad!”

“All the boys were waving now, but no one was happier to see him than I was.

“My dad had taken a chance and literally gone the extra mile (and then some) to show us his love. All these years later it had never left me.

“Now as I drove across the bridge in the darkness, I imagined Dad standing there, waving, still encouraging me. It made me think of a nightly prayer I’d said when the kids were younger, asking God to help me be the kind of dad my kids needed.

“At last I understood the most important thing I could do for my children—just be there, even if it meant going the extra mile, the way my dad did for me, cheering me on.”

…Being a father is an important job. With God’s help we can even make it a good job. I pray that you will have a wonderful day of celebrating Fatherhood.

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