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A Father's Gift Shared

After our father died, we kids found numerous journals he had never told anyone he’d kept.  They were stuck inside a thick cardboard folder that held various documents.  Because he had many of these old files we initially thought them unimportant, but thankfully we didn’t destroy them all before taking a peek inside.  As I opened and began reading one of the many books written in my father’s familiar scrawl, I was suddenly taken back in time.  A looong way back.  

They first appeared to be personal notes, but most were not at all.  He had written out large volumes of biblical passages, and added his thoughts on what they meant.


My dad was far from perfect, but he believed in God the Father, the saving grace of Jesus Christ through His death on the cross, and His subsequent resurrection.  I would even go as far as to say that I was introduced to the JOY of the Holy Spirit because of what I saw in my dad.

He was a very friendly man.  He enjoyed, and was fully engaged, when someone spoke with him about his business, for he was proud of what he’d built.  He was also very fun to be around.  He had a charisma that drew people to him.  

Having said that, he could be short and argumentative if we didn’t agree with him.  Admittedly, sometimes the whole “you must agree with me because you’re wrong and I’m right” thing got old, but now I remember many more of his positive traits.  Of course, death does that.  Right?  When someone passes away they suddenly seem more perfect than past reality may have proven.

Imperfect or not, he was my dad and I was his kid.  Stuck together by blood and genetics, as well as a pretty cool relationship, I LOVED him!  

In truth, he wasn’t the soft, warm and mushy type.  Instead, he said it like it was, got right to the point, and didn’t take any grief from me.  When I’d stress over studying something particularly challenging he’d tell me to buck up.  If I ever whined he’d shoot me a look that, if weaponized, would’ve maimed me for life, or even done worse.  He didn’t have to use corporal punishment.  His piercing expression demanded respect.  Lets just say, I only broke my curfew once.

He believed that men should act like men, provide for and protect their families, and be the spiritual leaders in their homes.  For all of that, I respected him.  It’s not everyday that I meet people who know what they believe and aren’t afraid to say it out loud.  (Even at Tim Hortons.)

No matter the good and/or the bad—the most important thing about my father was that he loved his Creator.  He read his Bible, and clearly strived for more understanding of what the words and passages really meant.  

In a world where less and less people have even picked up a Bible, I will forever be so thankful that my dad did. 

This Father’s Day — if your dad is still around, thank him for the good memories you have of him.  If you have hurts that need to be addressed, you may have to get that out in the open and dealt with too.  Sure, no father is perfect.  (Since we know that, they probably do too.)  But, if he spent time with you, or if you even have one special memory of him, talk to your dad about that.  A few laughs might be had, and who doesn’t need more of those these days?

If your dad taught you about Jesus and how much God loves you, give him a tight hug.  No matter what else is behind the two of you, that was the most precious gift he could’ve ever shared.     

Proverbs 23:24 (NASB1995) "The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice, and he who sires a wise son will be glad in him."


Pattie Janzen

I’ve just finished praying for you.  If you’ve contacted me before, I’ve also prayed for those requests.

Know that your confidentiality is kept.  Email: or Text: 306-621-7544

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