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On Father’s Day, more than other days, I think of my dad and all He is and has been to me.  I know there are many who don’t have dads at all or have dads that are detached from their lives or dads that hurt them in various ways.  This makes me especially thankful for my daddy.  I call Him Pops.

I love…

  • His corny jokes. Seriously.  They crack me up.  And I, of course, have followed suit.  If you need one just let me know.  Know what happened to the boy who ate firecrackers?  His hair grew out in bangs.  C’mon.  You know you want to laugh.  We’ve got a million of ’em.
  • His love of music and beauty. He taught me piano from the age of 4 and expected me to do my best.  He knows just about every type of flower and tree there is, it seems, as well as types of birds.  His lawn and yard have always been a favorite hobby and have always looked trim, lush, colorful, and well-loved.
  • His big smile and hearty laugh. If you know him, you know that he smiles often and laughs easily.  I like to think I inherited that from him.
  • His love for and commitment to His personal relationship with God. When I was young and got up early enough, I’d see my dad kneeling by the recliner in the front room praying.  I know his morning routine is still intact, a time when he has conversation with God, when he lays his heart out plainly and listens carefully.  I know he prays for me, my sister and brother and our families faithfully (along with my mom).
  • His gift of storytelling and preaching. I loved growing up under my dad’s messages, filled with illustrations so detailed and descriptive I could get lost in them and remember them for years.  My dad can describe a delicious meal in a way that will make you salivate and your tummy growl.  Not kidding!
  • His imagination and artistry. This one is tied to several already mentioned.  He’s a very creative guy.
  • His willingness to be real and never be too proud to apologize. The dad I see is the real deal and I love that about him.
  • His pet names for me like “little candied ginger peel”, “meemo kimeemo”, and one I actually came up with that he adopted “tarnished pickle fork”.  He has often said I was cuter than a lady bug’s hind leg, or even better, a lady bug’s underwear.  You have to admit, that is CUTE.
  • His silly side. I remember giggling with my sister and brother as dad galumphed off the diving board making funny faces or made up funny stories and songs just for fun.  I lost count of the times we skipped in parking lots or when he’d swing his leg up as we walked somewhere and kick us in the behind.
  • His heart of worship. It doesn’t take much for my dad to be swept up in praise – a rosy orange sunset, a praise song with words that ring true, an answer to prayer, a well-written poem or book, the wonder of space and creation.  His heart is tender and seems to be always reaching up to God.
  • His love for my mom. They’ve had their challenges, that’s for sure, but I know Dad loves Mom and means everything to me.  To be with them now is simply delightful because they’re so close and so obviously enjoy being together.  Is it possible they’ll celebrate 45 years of marriage this year??  Wow.

A few years ago my dad came down with spinal meningitis and almost died.  I couldn’t drive to Anderson fast enough from St. Louis when I found out how dire the situation had become.   As I walked into his room in intensive care, although he lay there almost unconscious he tried to sit up and reach for me when he heard my voice.  When I had to leave a few days later I could hardly make myself walk out of the door and leave him laying in the hospital.  I wanted to just stay there and lay my head on his chest, wrapping my arms around him to keep him in this life.  Thankfully, God did a miracle and spared him, thanks to the prayers of so many loving friends and family.

While driving to Anderson to see him that scary day, a song came on the radio that made me think of him.   It’s kind of become “dad’s song” in my mind because it sounds like something his heart would sing:

A purple sky to close the day
I wade the surf where dolphins play
The taste of salt, the dance of waves
And my soul wells up with Hallelujahs

A lightning flash, my pounding heart
A breaching whale, a shooting star
Give testimony that You are
And my soul wells up with Hallelujahs

Oh praise Him, all His mighty works
There is no language where you can’t be heard
Your song goes out to all the earth
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

Oh cratered moon and the sparrow’s wings
Oh thunder’s boom and Saturn’s rings
Unveil our Father, as You sing
And my soul wells up with Hallelujahs

Oh praise Him, all His mighty works
There is no language where you can’t be heard
Your song goes out to all the earth
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah

The pulse of life within my wrist
A fallen snow, a rising mist
There is no higher praise than this
And my soul wells up, oh my soul wells up
Yes my soul wells up with Hallelujahs

Oh praise Him, all His mighty works
There is no language where you can’t be heard
Your song goes out to all the earth
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Oh Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah!

Thank you, God, for a godly dad, for my pops.  I’m so proud of him and respect him so.  I’m proud when people say I look like him or resemble him somehow.

OH, that’s one thing I forgot to say that I love:  I love being his girl.

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