For such a time as this….. I wish my Dad was here.
For the joys of graduation celebrations….I wish my Dad was here.
For the relief but also the stepping into the unknown, I wish my Dad was here.
Dad was a wise man. But that’s not where his true gifts lied. His true gift was his ability to listen to people and know and affirm their value. Their value in God’s eyes.
For the calming sense of someone walking with you through anything, I wish my Dad was here. I can’t tell you how often I have wanted to discuss my medical issues with him and get his opinion on something. I can’t do that right now and I miss having those times.
For milestones missed, though I’m convinced that those who have gone to heaven before us are still taking part in the milestones. I still wish my Dad was here.
For discussions about the state of the church and the message it sends to those who don’t regularly go to church. I wish my Dad was here.
For witnessing the tear stained bear hug that Grandpa and grandson would have shared on that Graduation day, I miss my Dad and I wish my Dad was here.
For the conversations we’d have about things that he was doing at Seminary (because if he was still here, we all know he would still be working at the Seminary pouring his heart and soul into the future church leaders.) I wish my Dad was here.
For ending out the work day with a soft drink and a chocolate chip cookie at Panera, I miss my Dad.
Many people have asked how we’re doing now that it’s been 14 months. Invariably in the discussion,, something attune to “Your Dad was a great man,” would be said.
But he wasn’t. He was an ordinary baptized little boy from Muskegon, Michigan who was given, very early in his life the call to follow what God’s up to. He let God use him and God gave him more than he could ever have asked and imagined.
God called. Howiie answered, and answered, and answered. He continues to answer God’s calls in the body of written work that he left us.
I miss my Dad. I miss him for me but I also miss him for my kids, for my wife, for my mom, for my siblings and their families too.
Thank you for reading, thank you for allowing me to share the grief struggles that come in ebbs and flows over time. I’ve heard it said that grief is not a process it’s a journey. A process moves smoothly and progresses from step 1 to 2 to 3 etc. until you get to the end and you are done. A journey doesn’t work that way. You don’t do step 1, cross it off the list and go on to step 2. You can be all over the place and all at pretty much the same time.
And it’s okay. And it’s okay to not be okay.
Thanks for reading,
P.S. Some medical issues of my own have sucked up more time lately and so I haven’t gotten into my dad’s writing nearly as much as I expected. It will come soon.