Fathers Day 2013
We recently wrote a blog on Kyle Mabus, one of our counselors at King of Kings. Here are some of his thoughts on Fathers Day.
The third Sunday of each June is designated Father’s Day here in the U.S. Through the years I have viewed this pseudo holiday in many different ways. There were years I was too young to recognize why I was making crafts, just that dad ended up with them. Then were the years I sort-of embraced appreciation of what he had done for me in the past year (more like the past month). Then there were years I spaced the day either intentionally or just being an aloof young man without hurtful intent. There were years I’ve spent without regular contact with dad and I didn’t communicate with him on this day, birthdays and even a Christmas or two. The past ten years I have begun the journey of experiencing Father’s Day from the dad perspective. I have received the crafts and cards and some of them have stayed on the fridge longer than others. Father’s day has definitely looked different over the years.
Through the years I have also recognized what this day means to others. I have guy friends that were closer to their dads than I, and still are. Other guys I know missed out on getting to know their pops at all. I have gal friends who grew up without a father to do daddy stuff with and others who still call them to change light bulbs just to see them. It is fact that we all have unique journeys with our paternal links. It was in my lean years of contact with my dad that I constructed a couple of positive truths about this day we call Father’s Day.
Father’s Day is really about mentorship, rather than biology. In the beginning of American heritage, this day was promoted in the 1910’s to recognize men returning from war and what they had done for their family and country. Although today we commercialize these events with cards and gifts, the basic concept was to recognize the guys because the gals already had their appreciation in May. This holiday was a celebration of leadership and mentorship, not really chromosome contribution. Much like Mother’s Day, the recognition is really about heritage and tradition that is specific to each of us. In my lean years with my dad I recognized other male leadership and mentorship in my life on this day. That recognition may have been a coach, teacher, pastor or even a father of a friend. To me it was a way for me to still feel good about celebrating this day. We all have male mentors and leaders we respect in our lives. This day is great for acknowledging their blessing in your life. If they happen to be your paternal, adoptive or legal guardian of present or past record, so be it. Many of us are mentors and leaders ourselves. On this day we are all Fathers, so here’s some appreciation for you.
The most powerful positive truth about this holiday is that God is our Father. There is no replacement for this leader, mentor and protector. His love is perfect and pure. His love is unconditional and irreplaceable. His presence is everywhere at every moment. We know through scripture we are all his, no matter what. So on this Father’s Day, remember that it doesn’t matter whether you are close, estranged or missing your worldly father figure. We are all perfectly loved by our Father in heaven and He will continue to lead, support, mentor, challenge, and embrace and protect you, now and forever.
Even though I now have kids of my own I still think of myself as a child when Father’s Day comes around. I think about my elders, leaders and peers. I consider the thankful relationship with my Father in heaven. I encourage you to think about how Father’s Day feels for you. Take a moment and move past the shallowness of the commercialization. Move deeper than the standard definition of father. Ask yourself who the healthy influencers are in your life. Ask yourself how you can share appreciation with them and how you can contribute to others. In our fast paced world today we often overlook our opportunity to intentionally connect with others. Here at King of Kings there are tons of groups to connect with to fill that void. Maybe this year a connection made through a bible study, women’s group, men’s group, volunteering or even just moving your Sunday worship location will produce a new Father’s Day connection for you next year.