My Hero

All a little girl wants is a Daddy who treasures her. Who shows her the love of her heavenly father. Your dad is the mirror through which you see yourself and everyone else. This one relationship affects everything about you. My dad always worked so hard for us. I never doubted his love and faithfulness to my mom or our family. I always knew he loved being a Dad and he loved us with all his heart.

He was there. He was present in our lives. He taught me how to ride a bike, play ping pong and shoot a basketball. I still remember the time he took with me teaching how to put an arch in my shot and I think about it to this very day. My Dad had a ping pong table set up in our garage and a basketball goal on the driveway. We had pogo sticks, hula hoops and a jungle gym and a merry go round in the backyard. He set up a bit of a mini Disneyworld for us as kids. He made stilts for us. My dad was always making something or fixing up something around our house. He had always worked so hard but I believe he wanted to give us the childhood he never had. Dad said that he worked six days a week when he was a young boy. He even worked on Saturdays when his dad would go into town. He stayed behind to do his chores. He is the hardest worker I have ever seen and he was and is like a superhero to many of our friends and neighbor kids.

He is quite the storyteller.

My Dad definitely has the gift of storytelling. When he gets started there is not a dry eye. He tells stories about his childhood and growing up in Falkner, Mississippi and it is so hilarious. It’s just the way he can weave a story. I love listening to him when he starts telling us about all the people he grew up around. He is such a comedian and I especially love when he and my Uncle Bub get together. There is no stopping those two. I promise you will laugh until you cry. The best part is when his face turns bright red and he starts laughing too.

He always made a joyful noise.

My dad cannot carry a tune. My mom said that both times she was pregnant she prayed that we would not get our musical talent from my dad. He loves to sing and praise the Lord! I remember when we were little and our friends came over to the house he was singing in the shower a couple of times. They would look at us all funny and ask us what the noise was. We replied “Oh, that’s just our Dad singing in the shower.” He would worship the Lord and pray in the spirit and I am thankful for that.

He is a man of his word.

He is the kind of man you can depend on. If he says he is going to do something, fix something or be somewhere you can believe he will follow through unless he has a very good reason. We knew where we would be every Sunday morning, Sunday night and Wednesday night. If there was a revival we knew that we would be there every night as well. My Dad was a faithful man and a deacon in the church. He was called on many times to repair things around the church and did so quietly. My dad has the heart of a servant.

He is passionate about lots of things.

I only heard my Dad cuss once. It’s kind of a funny family story. Now that is. My brother and I were out walking on the beach when we were teens and meet up with some other kids on the beach. I thought I was cool and started smoking a cigarette. About that time my dad came up walking behind us and saw it in my mouth. He took one look at me and said “Girl, I’m gonna kick your ass.” My brother and I took off running.
At least I know I did. He was right behind me and tried to kick me in the behind but slipped on the sand and missed me. Cigarettes were never cool again after that. I knew he did it out of love. Parents do crazy things sometimes to get through to their kids. Dad loved us so much and he was quite passionate in expressing his affection. He did not want me going down that path.

He is a man who stands on the word of God.

There are things that should never be said to a child. When you download false information into a child it takes years to erase the damage. For my Dad the words played over and over in his mind. Negative messages from adults and coaches that he looked up to. My Dad is an overcomer. He has studied and meditated on the Word and he knows who he is in Christ. Others opinions fall away when you know you are truly loved by your creator and spending time in his presence changes your very mindset or outlook on life.

He is not afraid to share his struggles.

He is full of wonderful stories and he knows exactly the right time to share them for encouragement and sometimes for comic relief. When I was at a very low point my dad shared a story from his childhood with me. We have had some of the same struggles and have so much in common. He gives me a window to look through into his world. He looked fear right in the face for most of his life. He is the most courageous man I know. He won many battles because he knows who he is in Christ and what had been done for him on the cross. My Dad carried a pocket size book of bible verses with him to work each day. I remember it sticking out of his pocket. It was worn and marked in and underlined. I know that the scriptures were his lifeline.

My favorite memories with my dad were not our trips to Disneyworld or the beach growing up although I loved our family vacations. One of my favorite memories with my Dad was when he was driving a rig truck and came by the house one day. My mom lifted me up in his truck and I felt so special. I think this was my very first memory. As I got older I loved just being with him in his old F-150 truck as a young girl. I always felt special to ride with him whether we were going to our property or checking on the garden. It didn’t matter to me so long as I was with him. My Dad was my hero and he knew the answer to every question. I asked him so many questions he lovingly started calling me “Question mark.” I know I got on his nerves after a while but he tried to answer me the best he could.

He put up a tire swing on our property so while they worked in the garden my brother and I got to swing so high. We worked a little in the garden and sold vegetables at a little stand there on our property. Another favorite was when my dad would load up our four wheeler and take us to the Sand Pits on Sunday afternoons. We had so much fun riding around on all the trails and doing different stunts. I was a bit of a tomboy and loved every minute of it.

At the age of 18 when it was time to leave for college 14 hours away from home my Dad drove me from Tennessee to Florida with every inch of my red Camaro packed to the gills. We had the best talks on those car rides. He prayed with me and helped me get set up in my dorm room and made sure I knew where all the main roads were. When I dropped him off at the Orlando airport he made sure I knew my way back to the college. He thought of everything.

I am so thankful for my Dad and the time we get to spend with him. He was in a terrible accident in 2001 and he miraculously survived. We almost lost him but it was not to be. The Lord had praying people stationed around my dad that day. On the side of the road they prayed over him as he lost consciousness after being ejected from the van. God had other plans. He got to meet five grandchildren he never would have met on this earth had he left us that day. He is so good with them and they all adore their Poppa so much! I get to call him and tell him when one of our babies loses a tooth or asks Jesus to come and live inside their heart. He gets so excited whens he hears that they want to be baptized and that they are following Jesus. Our family is so blessed for generations and generations to come because of my Dad and the choices and sacrifices he has made. I love you Daddy!

Happy 69th Birthday to you!

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