My Dad grew up on a farm and then became a farmer as an adult. It is what he knew – the good and the bad. As a kid, it was a great life. Looking back now, as a grown adult, I realize that it wasn’t always such an easy life for my parents.
Easy doesn’t make us who we are.
As Father’s Day rolls around I am find myself more thankful each year for all that I had in my life because of my Dad. My Dad is 84 years. When I call and ask how he is, I can almost see the twinkle in his eyes, as he responds: “Can’t keep an old dog down”. My Dad has weathered the storms of life, some of them easy, some of the hard. He has been married to my mother for 65 plus years, now has something like a total of 70 kids, their spouses, grandkids and great grandkids to call his own. He has worked hard and has the years behind him to retire now and to do all the things he wants to do.
But he chooses differently.
My Dad is an everyday leader.
As long as I can remember, no matter how much was on the agenda for the day, if a neighbor stopped by for coffee, he made the time for them. If someone was in need, he was there. Somehow, even though our closest neighbors were a half mile down the road he always seemed to know when there was a problem. In the midst of life, he found time to be involved in the community.
And, he is still doing that today.
If there are things to be done, and people who need help, and he is still able to do it, you will find him there.
My Dad was not a leader by position, nor did he have a lot of degrees behind his name.
He understood that….
- what matters in life is intentionally leading a life of influence in the circle God has put you in and look for those opportunities
- it means being our best selves, and when we mess up – we learn from it and we keep going
- we seek to honor God above all else
- we influence because of who we are
- we have to think differently
- it means people are more important than schedules or things
- influencing and loving others is a way of life that never stops
I am thankful for my Dad and for all he has modeled to me. Whether you had a Father or another person who has influenced your life – take the time to thank them today. The best gift we can gift those who have made a difference in our lives is to life differently ourselves.