Sunday, December 25, 2011

Love you, Dad

So this is Christmas
And what have you done

I can’t say I was a huge Beatles fan…it was before my time and there was too much really good 70s music to keep me entertained. But this year. This year, this song played in my head.

We lost him on December 16. He was the best man I knew, the best of the full grown men I know. My boys, of course, are pretty darn good…but Dad, well Dad was the best of men.

Another year over
A new one just begun
And so this is Christmas
I hope you have fun

He loved Christmas. The lights, the tree, the gifts, the waiting, the expectation. He loved every minute of it. Granted, he liked Halloween, too. I remember when he rigged up a fabulous sheet-ghost to a foot pedal and awfully eerie music…surprised any of the trick-or-treaters actually made it to the candy dish! But Christmas…he loved giving as much as he loved surprising.

The near and the dear one
The old and the young

A very merry Christmas
and a happy New Year
let’s hope it’s a good one
without any fear

That last line is the hard part…and the comforting part. It’s hard, because the future doesn’t quite look right without Dad. He was always there, always available to help, to answer questions, to hug and say, I love you. A future without him elicits at least a sense of fear…

And yet, I have comfort in knowing Dad is looking out for me and for us. Maybe that isn’t theologically correct or spiritually adequate but it works for me. I’m good with knowing my Dad is looking over my shoulder (most of the time) and helping me along the path. I’m good with knowing Dad will watch over my kids when I can’t and look after my Mom when I can’t be there and walk with my sister when she needs companionship.

I hope it’s a good one.

I think it will be. I learned from him how to be strong and confident and faithful. I learned how to draw from the unknown well of courage and face what comes next. I learned to trust that God will always, always be there.

And so this is Christmas
I hope you have fun

Love may be the point in most of our understandings of God and what it means to live as Christ…but fun has got to be up there, too. Dad knew all about having fun. If I get any legacy from him at all, let it be a legacy of fun. A legacy of confidence in who he was and who he belonged to that allowed him the joy to simply have fun.

Rest in peace, dear Daddy. I love you and I hope you have fun.