Yes, Overtime I’ve come to terms with the fact that even though life starts with the seed of a father, it’s sustained by the placenta of the mother. So in truth its understandable when its mother’s day and everybody everywhere calls, visits, texts or sends a greeting card to mum, no matter the distance. And on Father’s day far less is done.
This doesn’t add up entirely because fathers (also) give their all in raising their children. Some stuck with jobs that they didn’t love, bosses that were practically unbearable, working conditions that weren’t as good, some took up jobs that could be simply described as dangerous or demeaning, so there would be food on the table, clothes on their backs, a roof over their head, the bills are paid, and so they stay in school, some shelved their entrepreneurial dreams, and even forgot where they kept them, for fear of an unsteady paycheck, because their dependants were their priority.
In wielding the rod of discipline they’ve risked being seen as the ‘wicked’ parent because they were entrusted with the toughest decisions as regards reprimands and scolds, especially the ones mums were too emotional to make. They risked being seen as callous but that notwithstanding fathers have been (and are still) a pillar of moral rectitude because God, and to a large extent society entrusted them with that responsibility. Though they need to better master the art of chastening with one hand and ‘drawing near’ with another, our society would have been worse off by a mile without them.
Little wonder a handful don’t make it through, some losing their lives in the process due to unintentional neglect of health conditions till they got out of hand or crumbling under the pressure of this high calling, a few had to do it alone due either divorce or death of a spouse , and a handful of them run away. Some because they didn’t see fatherhood modelled to them at all, or the others because they themselves were children of runaway dads and didn’t have any mental picture of what being a ‘present dad’ entailed.
Encourage yourself in the Lord, not just because he is our source, but also because he knows what it feels like to be a father, to have his efforts at instilling discipline in his children misunderstood a times, he knows what it is like to be there for people and not receive the appreciation you deserve, in his case some even deny his existence, He knows what it’s like to constantly think of others before himself, He perfectly understands the way you feel when the child you thought you brought up in the way of the Lord is now old and looking like he is about to depart from ‘it’. You know how I know he knows? He is their father too, just as much as he is your father. Trust the writer of Hebrews when he says that “we have a high priest who is touched by the feelings of our infirmity”. Rest in the fact that you don’t have to father alone, you’re just a decoy, he is the real father; both yours and theirs.
So to the few good fathers (and men) out there, including but not limited to biological dads, foster dads, Uncles, Godfathers and also those who have taken other people’s children as theirs and are providing, protecting, preserving, guiding these ones and further reducing the ‘father to fathered ratio’, I say Thank you. This young man represents the billions of people you’ve impacted, having experienced fatherhood from different men, at different stages, at different times and in different forms and I know without a doubt I’m better for it and our world needs more of it. Hitherto we were scared, now we gladly anticipate when we’ll be called upon to render this noble calling.
Like my Grand pa, Bishop T D Jakes would say ‘A good man is known for the fullness of his worth upon his demise’, so until when you’ll breathe your last and receive your reward(s) in heaven, for those in the faith, Encourage yourself in the Lord. I assure you that we might not say it often, though we’re learning how to, but know that you’re impacting lives; you’re leaving footprints in the sands of time. Your hard work has paid (is paying) off.
Thank you and God bless you.
To the children and mums, Dads are doing so much and they’re getting so little compared to what they deserve in terms of recognition, and appreciation. Make them feel loved, don’t just love them ‘undercover’, let them know; let them hear it, let them see it. Let them feel it, let them touch it.
Happy Father’s day,
With all of the father’s Love.