Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you, who walk in the light of your presence, Lord. They rejoice in your name all day long; they celebrate your righteousness.  Psalm 89:15-16 NIV

This blog is written by my bride, Judy. She is the finest Christian I know and walks closely with the Lord.  I call her spirituality a “stream of consciousness” spirituality.  She is aware of God’s presence in all of life, much like the psalmist describes above.  And she writes about it on her blog at  Judy’s blogs are practical, full of everyday experiences, and they have encouraged and inspired many people. We often hear reports of how her words were just what someone needed for that day.   

It is amazing to me how the Lord gives Judy something to write each morning.  I listen daily as she shares what she has received from the Lord.  It is simply a “God thing.”  I hope all the men and fathers who read this enjoy what my bride had to say for Father’s Day:

Soon Father’s Day will be upon us, and the stores will be full of shoppers trying to find just the right gift for dad – or at least something he doesn’t already have.  We all had a father, and our hearts remember him on this special day, even if he may no longer be with us.  Today, however, there is a crisis of fatherhood in America as many fathers have opted out of their role and have not been there for their children.  It could have been through divorce, or business pursuits, or occupational challenges, or irresponsibility, etc. 

One of our friends has a 20-year-old son who he has not seen since he was 2, as his ex-wife made sure he can’t locate his son.  Sadly, that son needs to know he has a dad who cares.  We all need the assurance that our dad loves us – and it is especially important in middle school when bullying takes place and we are trying to find out how we fit in.  But it matters at any age that our dad is proud of us, and for so many this is lacking.  That doesn’t mean that dad’s shouldn’t discipline us, for it is also important that dads also set boundaries and have consequences if we go beyond them; it is a way of loving and protecting. 

One man sadly told Al that he remembers the very day his dad gave up on him and no longer disciplined him; he felt lost and that his dad didn’t care.  I was blessed to have a loving father.  I never doubted his love for me; his arms were always open wide to hugs and love.  Al’s dad was absent emotionally and spiritually, although he provided for the physical needs of the family. 

None of us got to choose our dads.  But if you are a dad reading this, you can choose what kind of dad you want your children to remember.  In Eph. 6:4 (ESV), we read, “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”  More than ever today we need fathers who train their children according to God’s ways.  But even when we had (or have) an absent father, we all have a Heavenly Father who loves us unconditionally, disciplines us when needed, and believes in us.

Challenge for today: Thank your loving Heavenly Father that He is always present, and provides all that you need, even if it was lacking in your earthly father.