Author Archive

Nice Hat!

March 13, 2009

Some of the best memories I have of my Dad are the times when we started something with excitement, got half-way in, and then didn’t know whether we could salvage it from disaster. There was that woefully under-powered go-cart we built, named the “Chug,” assembled from a scavenged motor, a plank stolen from the basement shelves, and wheels bought at the hardware store. We were stumped when it came to rigging up the steering mechanism, and the assembly stopped. I was eleven, and an eager helper, but the engineering was way over my head. One night we were seated at dinner when my Dad jumped to his feet, shouted: “I know how we can do it!” and bolted down the basement stairs. I was on his heals, still swallowing my chicken casserole. There, with shafts, axles, and chunks of steel the basic geometry of our steering dilemma was solved. The next day we went to the welder for a few precision bends of the steel spindles, and progress resumed.

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The Greatest Words I Never Heard

February 25, 2009

Reba McEntire, before she began her sitcom acting career, sang some of the saddest and most touching ballads of loneliness and longing. She has that evocative catch in her voice, and she tells picturesque, but believable stories in these sad songs. But, none of them has stayed with me like this one, which expresses a child’s desire for a father’s love and attention:

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“I Want to be That Boy”

February 4, 2009

Deep in the place where the first stirrings of manhood begin, every boy wants to be like his Dad.  He wants to be tall, strong, capable and manly.  When a boy’s father emanates a quality of Christlikeness, this imitative desire is easily transferred, as boy becomes man,  from the earthly father to the heavenly Father.   As I reflect on my father-in-law, who passed away at the age of ninety, I see this lifelong desire to be with, and like, his Father.  Carl grew up in upstate New York with his dad, who was a country veterinarian.  He went on to pastor for over sixty years, serving the Lord tirelessly, cheerfully, inconspicuously.  When I think about what fueled him, what kept him going all those years, I think it was his desire to be his Father’s boy, something like this: (more…)