A Father With No Regrets

BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR My husband is a strong man. But, as our five children well know, he’s also a sentimental softie when we reach certain milestones. With each graduation, each moving out, and each wedding, there comes a moment when Jim will cry. Whether it be a speech or a toast or a quiet moment hugging goodbye, their big, strong father will break down in tears. This spring and summer, our youngest child graduated from college, will move to Austin to begin his new job, and marry his childhood sweetheart. It’s the Great Sentimental Milestone Trifecta. We’ll need tissues. Lots of them. Jim’s tears spring from a deep well of love for our children. There are, however, tributaries of regret which flow through his heart. Opportunities missed, unfulfilled plans, whispers of inadequacy—did he do enough? Did he prepare them to go out and live in this world? Indeed, can any earthly father do enough? Among the many word-pictures in scripture given to us to help us understand God, “Father” stands out. The first person of the Godhead isn't only the Father to Christ, his eternal Son, but throughout scripture he calls himself Father to those he draws to himself, his adopted children. Through the prophet Hosea, God speaks these sweetly paternal words to Israel: When Israel was a child, I loved him,     and out of Egypt I called my son. . . . . it was I who taught Ephraim to walk;     I took them up by their arms,      . . . . I led them with cords of kindness,     with the bands of love, and I became to them as one who eases the yoke on their jaws,     and I bent down to them and fed them. (Hosea 11:1, 3, 4) A Father With No Regrets Even though no earthly father can live up to the perfections of our heavenly Father, we still recognize in these tender passages the heart that beats in the chest of so many fathers we know and love. The imperfect love of our fathers points us to the perfect love of our heavenly Father, who will never weep for opportunities missed or hold regrets that he didn’t do enough for his beloved children...

A Father With No Regrets2022-05-04T23:16:07+00:00

On Father’s Day and Making Crumbs

“Dee-lightful,” he exclaims in his best Julia Child impression. “Simply delightful! Now, see if you can make it even messier.” It’s my husband, David, currently swathed in a makeshift apron of discarded curtain fabric the girls have tied over his work clothes—slightly too tight and definitely too short. “More crumbs! Let’s make more crumbs! Your mother will be so pleased!” he shouts to his very charmed and giggly audience. “More mess! More mess!” (Thank goodness they’re only pretending…it was just Mother’s Day, after all.) Making crumbs is just one of the games David has invented with our girls, but it’s at the top of my favorites. Ever a sucker for a great analogy, this one doesn’t disappoint. David and the bitties can pretend all they want that they are “trashing mama’s kitchen” out of its reasonably clean state (it is still quarantine, after all…) but I see the reality. The crumbs aren’t imaginary. They are very, very real and very, very delicious. David leaves crumbs of godliness, and his girls and I snack them right on up.  Sure, it seems an appropriate time to spout some kind words about my husband (it is almost Father’s Day, after all…) but truth is these words aren’t ultimately about David, but rather about the God he loves and serves—the God that has made my husband into the man he is and is transforming him into Christlikeness more and more, day by day. For David uniquely reveals and represents Jesus in such a way that I hope anyone finding themselves three hundred words into this article alongside me today might be spurred as I am. Like me, I hope you will be spurred toward humility and kindness all because of the ways David reflects Jesus....

On Father’s Day and Making Crumbs2022-05-05T00:36:38+00:00
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