Father Figures

“A Good Father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed, and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society.”

Billy Graham

This past weekend, like every year in June we celebrated Father’s Day here in the US. For some, this day represents spending time with the ol’ man, having dinner and reminiscing on the good ol’ days. Spending time with the kids and an afternoon filled with family time, making more memories.

For some it may seem like just another day. A day that is least celebrated out of the entire year; not having one to celebrate with. You cannot celebrate one who you never met or know very little of. It is difficult to reminisce on memories that are non-existing or memories that you would rather remain forgotten.

However, for others it may represent the opposite. Father’s day is a day of recognition, honor and respect  to the one that has rightfully earned it. It may be a day to recognize the one who filled a role that was not awarded by the divine order set in place.

It is those who stepped into a position not to replace, but to simply provide a figurative role that in the long term is considered essential. They stepped in at time that was pivotal to one’s life and will always be appreciated and remembered. 

These may not be fathers, but they are Father Figures.

On Mother’s Day, I like to always make it a point to appreciate and honor all the single mothers. The mothers that raised or are currently raising their family on their own. Having seen this first hand, I know the struggle. 

On Father’s Day, it is no different. I once again honor the mothers that also play this dual role in the household not only as a mother, but somehow as a father as well. As I reflected on personal experience, I realized that this holiday to a large majority has a variety of representations.

Some acknowledge this day just like any other. Rightfully so, as the person is entitled to their real feelings. There are a few rather, take the time to honor the figurative parental role being the father figure. This is in my opinion is very prestigious honor.

Having only one parental figure in the home has been for many years the common norm. The majority of families only being led by the mother.

However, the “father figure” role comes in high on the list of recognitions, yet rare. There are people that have made themselves available and have earned to be recognized as a father figure.

This is no walk on role. It takes courage and true grit to take on a full blown family as a step-father or father figure. It requires love and dedication beyond explanation to take a person under your wing to guide them or provide a significant presence where there isn’t one. It doesn’t only come in the form of a step-father, but it could be an uncle, brother, close family member or even a close family friend.

This is not a role that is taken likely. Often it is criticized, sidelined, or forced to absorb the traumatic effects of life changing events that previously transpired; all withholding any valid opinion. Father figures willingly take on a responsibility to be alongside the ones that have taken up a room in their heart. Some make unselfish sacrifices just to stand with the ones they love expecting no recognition in return.

I saw this first hand growing up and personally know the effects of the absence of this important father figure role. These are big shoes to fill and my hat goes off to all who have willingly and successfully done so. 

Now I am a father of two wonderful boys and husband to a beautiful wife. I stay close to God’s guidance to be able to provide the example I didn’t see. To be the presence I didn’t have. I seek God daily in order be everything I did not see. I didn’t have the opportunity to see what a relationship looks like at home or what a father look like in the home. This is what makes me stay close to God, to be everything I did not see and did not learn from someone else.

The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate.

Psalms 103:13

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