I’ve written about my dad on this blog before. I make it no secret that I truly look up to him and revere him, not only because he’s my dad, but also because he stands as an exemplary human being. My dad is a good man.
My mom has told me many stories about how my dad compared to other guys she was dating when they first met. These other gents were incredibly exciting - boating trips, snow skiing, hiking, motorcycles. My dad on the other hand seemingly fit a different end of the spectrum - unassuming, friendly, but not as outstanding. In other words, normal. (Can I point out how many extraordinary people in our lives are really just normal people doing the best that they can? I totally relate to feeling like just a regular ‘normal’ person - it doesn’t mean anything about who you are or what kind of life you do/might lead.)
My mom went out on dates with him mainly because he was just such a nice guy. Friendly, funny (and, as I recently read, there is much to be said for dating a funnyman), and (my mom always emphasized this part) kind. She could spend lots of time with him because she felt comfortable around him (and there is a lot to be said for that particular quality - people feeling comfortable around you). Over time, she realized that of all the people she was dating, my dad was the only one she really wanted to date.
My parents’ lives together haven’t been perfect, and my dad isn’t a perfect man. But he makes up for it in some wonderful and incredible ways.
- We didn’t always have scripture study in our home every night, but we most certainly never missed family prayers and going to church every week.
- For that matter, we struggled a lot with family home evening, but we never missed our weekly family movie night.
- My dad is a strong-willed and passionately opinionated person and sometimes expresses his feelings about certain situations, even in the Church. Regardless, I never once remember him complaining about having a particular calling; I never remember him arguing directly with a leader. Instead, I remember him dutifully and diligently fulfilling all of his callings to the best of his ability; I remember his monthly home teaching excursions and being willing to give service at a moments notice.
- He was always worthy to give a priesthood blessing. Not once, when asked, has he ever hesitated or said ‘not this time’. This is the man who, when he was younger, would walk to church all by himself so he could exercise his Aaronic Priesthood. He did not take his responsibility to be worthy lightly.
- He is a hard worker and has always provided for our family. Never have we had want in our house. Only recently have I begun to realize just how difficult and how much of a sacrifice this had to have been for him.
- Most importantly, I’ve never doubted that my father loves me. Whether it be him taking me out to get a root beer freeze after a particularly painful orthodontic appointment or him coming to my plays or events, or even just having him around - I have always known that I am part of what makes his world good.
So, thanks Dad, for being a great example to me. Thanks for showing me how to live my live in the best way possible. Thanks for not doing things easy, but instead doing them right. The impact and influence you have and will have on me is timeless and priceless to me!