Often holidays invite me to reflect and remember. Reflect on the privilege and responsibility of being a dad, spiritual dad, and grand-dad. And remember my dad … and so many spiritual dads who have impacted me throughout my life time. I thank God for each one of you. And I thank God, my quintessential Father, what a joy it is to be your beloved (favorite) son.
As i think about being a dad many memories flood my mind. Having children (grandchildren and spiritual children) is a blessing like no other.
Many years ago I remember pulling into the driveway of our home early one morning. I had just gotten off duty from a busy twenty-four-hour firehouse shift, and I was coming home to change clothes and go to my side job. Between the two jobs, I was working over seventy-five hours a week.
Before heading into the house, I sat in the car and took a deep breath. My energy level was at an all-time low as I thought about the two busy days ahead working my side job before returning to the firehouse for another twenty-four-hour shift.
Just as I was wallowing in self-pity, the front door of our home burst open and our four children raced out. They tackled me as I stepped out of the car. Timmy jumped on my back as I threw Amy over my shoulder. Colleen and Cate wrapped themselves around my legs and sat on my feet, forcing me to limp into the house.
All four of the kids were competing for my attention, smothering me with hugs and kisses and telling me fragmented stories of their day. The more they giggled, the more energized I felt. All of a sudden I forgot how exhausted I was and how many hours of work I had ahead of me. As I entered the house with them still clinging to me, our children screamed in unison, “Daddy’s home!”
In my entire life … those are two of the greatest words I have ever heard.