Lessons from my Father...

It has been over a decade since I have seen my father. I think of him during the quiet moments of my life. He is sitting in his favorite chair with a book or Bible in his hand reading. He did most of his parenting (with me anyways) from that chair. Planting seeds, offering words of wisdom to digest. The best example I can give is that he reminded me of Andy Griffith...right down to those same half boots that zipped on the side.:-)

As a child I would often tease that I'd rather take the spankings than have my father speak with me about something I did wrong. The spanking would be over quickly but his words would linger and cause me to think about not only what I had done but also the consequences thereafter. He never yelled (or at least I have no memory of it). He just spoke words of wisdom...no long lectures just simple and to the point. He didn't hover. In fact quite the opposite. He allowed us to explore and even stumble some times because I think he knew that stumbling is where our greatest lessons would come from.

I can recall (as a teenager) telling my dad that I wanted to quit church choir. My mom was upset but allowed my father to the one to speak with me. He sat in his chair and I in mine. He cleared his throat. He always did that before beginning to talk with me. Then he began to speak. "Your mother tells me that you want to quit singing in the choir." I responded by laying out, what I was sure were, profound reasons for wanting to quit and he sat just listening. He never looked angry. Nor did he raise his voice but when it was his turn to speak I fell silent. All he said was that it wasn't about whether I wanted to quit. More importantly what was I choosing in its place. Was it good and noble? Or was it frivolous and flighty? Yes his words were nothing short of convicting. He was teaching and whether I wanted to or not I was learning.

After all these years, I am thankful for that.

3 comments:

Carol Flett said...

He sounds like a man of wisdom. I had a great dad, too, and this post brings back memories of the times I spent with him.

Cindy Elavsky said...

Do you remember what you wanted to do instead? probably hang out with me more :) That's what I remember most about your dad too: smart, soft-spoken, and smiling as he looked at me over his glasses.

Shelley said...

I probably did Cindy. He was sure patient with me! :)

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