In honor of Father's Day, I have been sharing the series on a father's love. Today, I have the pleasure of opening my writing home to my husband, Noel.
One of the greatest ways Noel demonstrates love is in fatherhood. As a father, He is tender and gentle. He listens and responds with warmth and intention. He exemplifies Christ, even in his shortcomings, because his desire is to serve. It’s not unusual for my husband to contemplate and ponder deep before expressing himself. But when he does speak his mind, a strength takes over that I’ve seen in very few people.
In recent moments reminiscing about our girls, Noel shared about the quality of time spent with them. “It’s not just about playing softball together or going to the park to play. I enjoy being with them for who they are…” As he shared his observations about his daughters, I sensed his great love. And I’m so pleased, he agreed to write his thoughts in honor of Father’s Day. I hope you enjoy hearing from him as much as I do.
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Anyone can be a parent, but fathering is love. Without love there is nothing.
“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (I Corinthians 13:13)
I have been blessed to be accepted, validated and loved by my father. This is what we men seek to know from our fathers – ultimately that we have done a good job. God blessed me and my wife with two beautiful amazing girls, full of colorful character and wonder. I repeatedly ask myself: How do I make sure they feel loved and validated as girls, now and into the future as they walk into womanhood? I have so many questions, I know it’s only through the adventure of trials, experiences and battles will they fully be realized and answered.
When first coming into the stages of fatherhood I recall thinking, "I want to be a father like my dad, caring and loving, someone that can see beyond the now and point me in the right direction of knowing God.” Becoming good friends with both my father in laws, they took me in as a son and fathered me in ways that taught me how to reach for goals I didn’t think were attainable, to be involved, to never give up, and to be forgiving in the hardest of circumstances. From the wisdom and kindness of these three men, I have been given examples of what I aspire to be in a father.
In the short eight and a half years being a father, I have grown through some of life’s toughest and most beautiful experiences with my girls. There have been nights when a crying shoulder or bedtime story built a connection to my girls that will last through this life. A hug or kiss meant more to me than any worldly aspiration. These gifts that were given to me by my girls will forever live in my heart.
Life moving forward with two little girls can be scary, but will be an adventure I look forward too. I'm eager to see how they grow to become women of God and how they show courage and love in life’s challenges. One thing is certain, I know they will continue to teach me about myself and show me how to become a better father and man.