Monday, May 25, 2015
In 1971, Memorial Day was officially declared a national holiday and placed on the last Monday in May. It is a day for remembering those who served in the armed forces. As a churchman I knew it was a "Canon" Sunday. Canon Sundays are those days when you can shoot a canon in the church and not hit anyone. :) My father realized that if no one wanted to come to church on Memorial Day weekend it was because the church wasn't meeting their needs. So he came up with the idea of making a patriotic show that was so engaging that it would draw people from across the country and people would make it a family tradition. "We are going to raise a huge flag, have marching bands, patriotic songs and give glory to God for our freedom and honor those who gave their lives for us." That is exactly what happened.
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
And he said to them, "Follow me and I will make you fishers of men."
|One of my many fishing trips with my father. September 1986|
One of the best gifts my dad gave to me was his time. As a parent myself, no matter how busy I was building my ministry, I always tried to let my children know that family came first. When my children were in school I selected the task of driving them and (even as the bell rang) prayed for them before they hurried out of the car. I realized that I learned this habit from my father who often drove me and my sisters to school and prayed each morning before we began the day.
Even as my children have grown into adults, some with children of their own, I make a point of telephoning them every few days and I try to go out to a meal or to a movie with them every few weeks. When we are in town, Donna and I have Sunday evenings set-aside for family dinners. Although we don't always see all of our kids at these dinners, they know that they can count on us if they need us.
Spending time with my children reminds them that I love them and they are a very important part of my life. Getting together is not always easy so I need to be intentional about making plans and following through on those scheduled family times. There is no substitute for time spent together.
My dad and I spent endless hours and went on numerous trips in pursuit of fish of all types. These amazing memories will stick with me for the rest of my life. Most importantly I will cherish the way he emulated and taught me how to be a "fisher of men."
You are loved and missed by me and by many Dad.