Since Wade dropped the Mea Culpa bomb on his inability to stick to schedule, I won't hassle him too much; yet, my hope is that others will also jump in and hold him to his word...however "loose" it might be!
My good friend really hit on the crux of fatherhood, that of providing and protecting for his family. I think this particular facet is a great way to do a self-check (for you fathers), but also how to prepare for the journey (for those of us who aren't). More importantly, it's an opportunity to reflect on what your father did right or wrong.
To answer Wade's questions:
- My father didn't travel a lot, but he did work a lot. Two jobs in two different towns required a lot of his time, especially weekends. Although it took away from time at home, his sole priority was financially providing for me and the girls.
- There's no doubt that both he and my mother went without in order to provide for us. It seemed like every time they got their savings up, one of us did something that completely wiped it out. I think the proudest my parents have ever been of me was when I became financially independent from them (thanks to the wifey)!
- This one's a little tricky because it's a matter of opinion. I doubt my sisters would agree with me on this; but going back to the first bullet point, my parents were maybe TOO willing to help us financially, despite the lesson we could have learned. Don't get me wrong, my selfish nature would probably be really bitter at them if they let me go into serious debt rather than bail me out. While I never had a credit card growing up, that was mainly because I was living on credit with them! They both have a hundred stories of me wanting something at that moment and "promising" to pay them back!
There's no doubt that my father looked at his job as the means of providing for us, but he also viewed his work as service to the Lord, especially his time as the Director of the Media Ministry at our church. At times I resented him for going up to the church after teaching all day and spending maybe 30 minutes to an hour at the house; but when I got older, I realized his commitment to honoring the Father in his work. I know he would've much rather been at the house with us; yet, he was CALLED to serve and I sincerely regret any animosity towards him for that.
My ol' pal dad most definitely provided me with the protection and stability I needed to be a boy and grow up at my own pace. Furthermore, he allowed me to make my choices, regardless of the consequences, but was there to help me when I needed it.
When I look at Wade and Tori together, I can't help but think that he's doing the same thing! I just hope I can follow suit.