Friday, June 13, 2008

Fathers Who Deserve to Be Honored


Like many of you I have known some remarkable men who have done all they knew to do to be the best fathers they could be, whether their children were their own blood or children they chose to care and provide for. I have seen men live modestly in order that their children might live well, rarely receiving a word of thanks or acknowledgment from anyone. My heart has gone out to the good fathers who are divorced from the mothers of their children, and do everything within their means to continue fathering their children. I have seen men who don't have children of their own, reach out with great love to children who need them. I am in awe of good fathers. I am moved by the depth of their love and their ability to demonstrate that love over and over again.

My own father died many years ago. He comes to me in my dreams now, and some years after he died he pledged to protect me. I didn't know I needed protecting at the time, but more than once he has reached to me through the dream-time, helping me steer clear of my self-made sink holes.

With great delight, I watch my husband, assume the new role of both father and grandpa to my adopted daughter and grandchildren. It may all be new territory for him, but the moment he opens his heart and speaks—well, his heart know exactly what to say—and any apprehensions dissolve into laughter and inspiration. Isn't that one of the great gifts of a father? Someone who knows just what to say to inspire you to be all you desire to be.

On Father's Day, we have many wonderful fathers to be grateful for, don't we? So many dads doing their best. So many men inspiring us! At SpiritQuest, we will be offering a special ceremony for our fathers, and if you are a father of your own children or a father to children (or even adults) who need a fathering touch, we will be holding you in our hearts.

This beautiful Father's Day Prayer has been circulating among the SpiritQuest Council members. The author certainly captures the sentiments that live in the hearts of many of us.



A FATHER'S DAY PRAYER


Let us praise those fathers who have striven to balance the demands of work, marriage, and children with an honest awareness of both joy and sacrifice

Let us praise those fathers who, lacking a good model for a father, have worked to become a good father.

Let us praise those fathers who by their own account were not always there for their children, but who continue to offer those children, now grown, their love and support.

Let us pray for those fathers who have been wounded by the neglect and hostility of their children.

Let us praise those fathers who, despite divorce, have remained in their children's lives.

Let us praise those fathers whose children are adopted, and whose love and support has offered healing.

Let us praise those fathers who, as stepfathers, freely choose the obligation of fatherhood and earned their step children's love and respect.

Let us praise those fathers who have lost a child to death, and continue to hold the child in their heart.

Let us praise those men who have no children, but cherish the next generation as if they were their own.

Let us praise those men who have "fathered" us in their role as mentors and guides.

Let us praise those men who are about to become fathers; may they openly delight in their children.

And let us praise those fathers who have died, but live on in our memory and whose love continues to nurture us.


Kirk Loadman