Last year I wanted to have Dad’s funeral on 4/21/2020. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 Pandemic created restrictions on in-person gathering. I asked my Mom if she still wanted to do some form of ceremony to honor his life, and she did. For her, it was a process of closure. Like me, she had to live through 2020, and adjust to a world of mask mandates, being isolated, and she had to do it without the person that she had been married to for almost 50 years. It’s hard for me to imagine a life without my sweet wife. In the next few years, we will have been in relationship together for a decade. It doesn’t feel like that much time has gone by, but as the Latin phrase goes: Tempus Fugit – Time Flies.
My Dad, and I didn’t always a healthy relationship, but in the end, I can comfortably say that I love him. I don’t feel burdened by the pain and anger I had while he was alive. I don’t ignore the bad that he did, but my mind doesn’t focus on it either. The Lord can truly carry any burden and help heal every wound if you seek Him and let Him. My Dad grew up a Baptist, and in his youth, he experienced a relational wound which caused him to walk away from the faith and church. In his early twenties, he chose to become a Buddhist. Growing up most of my life in a Buddhist household, I had run ins with Christianity, and I never considered myself Buddhist, because my Mom didn’t want to force me to believe in their faith. I found myself more spiritual than Buddhist, and I had an interest in all of the world religions. However, after many different types of life events, I made a choice for Christ in 2012. It is this choice, and the changes that the Lord did in my life that led my Dad to start visiting my church.
My parents were faithful contributors and followers at the local Buddhist temple, which they helped start. But after a false claim of their integrity and seeing how human these “holy” monks and board members really were, my Dad felt even more drawn to my church. It was the atmosphere of kindness, accepting people where they were in life, the messages, and the Holy Spirit, which lead my Dad to have a recommitment baptism in which he recommitted his life to the Lord on 4/8/2018. This event was only a few weeks before his birthday. When he became saved again and a member of the church, he committed his free time to a small group in which he would help people work on their resumes. He was really good at it due to his experience as a manager and I do not know how many people he helped find a job or find a better job. I know he helped at least one person that I still am friends with to this day. It was the leader of this group that became one of my Dad’s closer friends. He came to visit my Dad often when he was in the hospital, and he was with us when we prayed with him not knowing that February of 2020 would be his final trip to the hospital. He and other co-leaders were there on 4/21/2021 when we finally laid my Dad to rest at the veteran’s memorial. In honor of my Father, I’ve started participating in the small group too. Helping my Mom out of the car, the attendant asked if anyone would speak, and I had no intention of speaking, but in the zero hour I said I would speak. With that cool breeze, and clear sky, I spoke and honored him and thanked everyone that took their time to come to honor his life. Evie was quiet in the crowd, and she won’t remember this day, but her presence and the Lord gave me the strength to speak from my heart. I trust that Dad’s in Heaven and know that not just I but my family will see him again one sweet day. Is there more than debt free?
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This month’s video is Believing Thomas from the Church of the Highlands YouTube channel.
“The LORD will send rain at the proper time from his rich treasury in the heavens and will bless all the work you do. You will lend to many nations, but you will never need to borrow from them.”
I believe in your journey to….
A Debt Free Me