The older I get the more I realized how blessed I have been over the years. I enjoy looking at all the people God has put into my life. One person who I am growing more and more in awe of would be my dad.
It hasn't been easy the last few years. He was diagnosed with Parkinson's a few years ago and we are beginning to see more and more of the affects of what that means for him.
My dad was always a quiet man. But when he spoke, EVERYONE listened. His words carried love, wisdom, and a deep reality of THIS man walks with God. He loved and cherished my mom, he cared for his daughters, and he challenged young men. He took care of the bills, solved our problems, and was gentle in his correction. He opened his home, shared his resources, and served the youth, college students, and young marrieds. He managed his own business, which included teams and teams of people. He inspired workers, found loyalty out of employees, and for years built a sales force that allowed us to travel as a family and entertain like crazy.
I loved that I grew up in a home where my parents worked together. (Probably why I love serving beside my husband any way I can. I watched my parents my entire life serve together.) They both managed a Tupperware Distributorship for years before my dad became a Regional Vice President for my mom to be home more. He did Real Estate and Life Insurance and babysat 16 grandkids! The man is priceless!
We would snow ski in Colorado, water ski at lake Texhoma, and body surf the waves of Florida. There is no telling how many hours he pulled our friends behind a ski boat! Ask him...he will probably just shake his head! We played tennis, racquetball, and entertained 40 plus kids almost every weekend in our home. He sat at countless games watching one daughter cheer and the other dance.
He was a family man, business man, husband, father and role model.
As I watch him these days he may not be driving the boats, running a business, or shuffling the masses, but he IS still making a difference and walking the marathon of life.
He still has wisdom to share although his answer may come 10 minutes after the conversation. He is still walking through life although he might be a few steps behind the crowd.
He still has more to offer if we will just look! This man isn't giving up on life. He is pushing through every step of the way. I know most people would just go home, sit on the couch and serve their time. Not my dad! He continues to get out of the house, serve beside my mom, and is still as generous and gentle as he has always been.
I think his walk in life shows more of who he is now than any other time. He doesn't succumb to depression as I would think how easy that would be when your body won't do what you want it to. He isn't angry at God for what has been allowed to come his way. (I think we all question it more because a man that serves like he did, we didn't expect this!) He doesn't stay home in his cave when the world is moving 10 times faster than his. He is definitely my hero as he will finish a strong man! Parkinson's might have his body but it isn't who he is. It may make him physically weak but it hasn't made him spiritually weak. It has only robbed those we know now from knowing who he was then. But in reality, he is still the same! I hope the world doesn't ignore a man who has impacted so many lives in so many ways!
He has something to say if we are quiet enough to listen and slow enough to watch! He is my dad, and I admire him!