My dad lived to be 88 years old. He had a rich, full life. He never had much money. He was a salesman, which would surprise anyone who knew him, because he did not have a salesman’s personality! Hence….no money!
I always felt we were close. I spent lots of time with my mom and dad – growing up, after marriage… living close to them and being able to have them care for our children often. Then, when they moved to Florida, I stayed REAL close to them (a great place to visit :), up to the point of caring for them as they aged.
Today I learned something about my dad that I never realized before, and it brought me to tears. I always attributed the fact that he would never order anything expensive on the menu (but we could get what we wanted), or never would buy shoes for himself even when he had holes in them, but I always had what I needed….and he always preferred the backs and wings from the chicken….to the fact that he was a product of the depression, when they had to do without often times, or with very little.
Today’s message at church was based on John 15:13, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends”. It’s what Jesus did, and, long story-short, it’s what we need to do to be a friend to our neighbor, children, brother, husband, family. A friend is the greatest relationship, and are we willing to sacrifice ourselves for it? Will we talk to that odd relative this holiday season, or will we drop everything to bring milk to a neighbor who can’t get out? Sacrifice does not always mean to give your life, but also to give of your time, attention, money…in essence, give of your self.
My dad did that! There isn’t anything he wouldn’t do for my mom, for me, for our neighbors, for our relatives and family, that was within his meager means to give. Since he didn’t have much, he gave of himself.
He ate the back of the chicken after Alan, mom and I chose the white meat and the thigh.
I love and appreciate you more than ever, dad, and I sure hope that I let you know that enough when you were with me!