“My father didn’t tell me how to live. He lived and let me watch him do it.”
— Clarence Budington Kelland
Out of the many things God has blessed me with, the number one thing I thank Him for everyday is the gift of family.
As we grow older and see more of the world, we come to understand the importance of having a home that is safe, loving, and secure. And growing up, that is what my parents, most especially my dad, has provided my brothers and me. He has been the steady anchor holding us all together, showing us through his actions, rarely with his words, what it is like to be a man of God. My dad has sacrificed so much for our family and he did so without saying anything.
He has been my life’s constant support and this is a trait that he has shown not just at home but also at the work he does. He has remained steady and has always remained faithful to the values he believes in, never swayed by anything external but lives his life based on the truth of who God is. I’d like to believe that my dad’s steady faith and prayers has helped us thrive through life’s many challenges.
Today, my dad celebrates a special birthday and just like all the birthdays past, I will honor him the best way I know how — through my words.
My brothers and I have been so fortunate to have a dad like ours. From the moment he fell in love with my mom, he has always put her first. My dad has exemplified the love that can be seen in 1 Corinthians 13.
In his own way he has shown my mom a love that is like Jesus – steady, strong, unconditional, and unwavering. He welcomes everyone my mom loves with open arms. He doesn’t question, he simply loves. My dad has remained faithful to my mother and in doing so, he has provided a home environment that has positively impacted my brothers and I. We were fortunate enough to grow up in a home where love is alive and respect is at the forefront. I thank you daddy for the home you have built for us that has given us the foundation to be brave enough to take on the world.
It is my dad’s love that continually gives me the confidence to face the world. Because he believed in me, I have learned to believe in myself. And that is the best gift that he has given me.
My dad is also the most hardworking man I know. And he does so without the desire to be recognized. He simply puts down his head and gets to work, every day. Often, he is the first one in and the last one out and he does this authentically.
He has always believed that doing the work is more than enough. He is genuine in his interactions and has the desire to see everyone succeed. He often tells me that the greatest joy that his job brings is to see the new generation of basketball players win, not just on the court but in life as well. God has been so faithful in my father’s job, but I believe that this is also because that every single day he gives his 110 percent. He has worked tirelessly to provide for us and for that I will always be grateful.
And with that, I end with the three lessons I have learned from watching him live his life and I hope this impacts you the way his life continues to impact mine daily.
Always do your job with integrity and always be grateful.
My dad doesn’t take complaining or ranting lightly. He always believes that being grateful for the job you have will outweigh whatever it is that you are currently griping about. I used to be the world’s biggest griper but my dad would always remind me that our jobs, though difficult or challenging, is what puts food on the table so we go to work everyday with our heads held high thankful for the opportunity to provide for our families. We must be thankful for our job, do our work with integrity, and just be thankful. My dad has always asked what he can contribute rather than what he can get and that has made all the difference.
Do what you say. If you are unsure if you can do it, do not promise anything.
Words are powerful and my dad believes so. He always reminds me to be careful with what I say, what I promise, and what I speak. My dad never speaks negatively about other people or situations. He always finds the positive no matter what and this is one that I aim to embody every day of my life.
Believe that God has a plan and live your life knowing He is taking care of you.
My dad’s faith has carried us through and after every situation that has challenged us my dad would always say, “I knew God would get us through.” My dad is who he is because he has trusted God through all the seasons of his life, and that is what has made all the difference.
Happy birthday, daddy! Cheers to the many more wonderful years ahead for this is only the beginning of the many wonderful things to come!