On May 21st, 2011, I wrote:
“Men’s breakfast was awesome this morning. The Lord seemed to be reminding me He is my ‘Dad’ first. Saw fathers and sons at the breakfast and thought of my own Dad. Appreciate your prayers…”
Please don’t stop praying for your loved ones to be saved.
Anybody who knows can tell you that before my Dad passed away a couple years ago, now, he and I had an amazing 5 years together!
Before then, though…
My Dad’s moral compass spun like a top. He had every issue of Playboy magazine going back to the 1940s and introduced me to them when I was 12.
He made my cousins and I do immoral things and photographed us and then used those photos to blackmail us into allowing him to make more immoral choices.
He was very male chauvinistic and white suprematist.
One of his wives talked him into letting me go to Calvary, now The House, when I was seven where my own moral compass would be recalibrated over time. (Too much time, but that’s for another time.)
It was at his apartment many years and another wife later, he would say, “If you go to that church just one more time, you’re out!” When I came home from church that night, I would find all my stuff in his front yard.
Many more destructive choices would affect my home over time wherein he would make statements like, “You need to break her down, first, to build her back up.” and “your son’s a failure and that makes you an f***ing failure.”
Still, he was my Dad, and I would not give up on him.
A year after Jaclyn and I moved back to California, four years after this ‘Memory’, I would receive a call from him wherein he would ask, “What gaming console do you play on? What games do you play?” He would buy an XBox and the games Les, my son, and I were playing, and he and I would begin playing all of the Ghost Recons into the wee hours of the night and mornings as our families slept.
I would turn off the game volume because I didn’t like the cussing and it would just be he and I talking…
It was like we final were just a father and son tossing a ball to each other.
Eventually I would hear him say, “You’ve done alright.” “You have good kids.” and the one that made me think he’d been replaced by an alien, “I love you, son.”
He was 75 when I heard those words.
Never stop praying.
Never stop believing.
Only God, who had forgiven me for my own bad choices over time, could have given me the courage to believe and forgive my Dad to this point of seeing our relationship become this before he passed.
In the end, he had a wonderful wife who loved and endured him and I gained a great stepbrother and niece.
At his funeral, we all shared our stories and had a wonderful time reminiscing the good memories.
Forgiveness is greater…