Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Happy Father's Day.

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY June 19, 2011TO ALL FATHERS. The picture on the left is my father Benjmain Wilson Baird , The picture on the right is the father of my seven children, Charles Columbus Shaw.
Happy Father's Day especially my two sons, Terrell Shaw and David Shaw  and five sons in law, Gilbert Crouse, Jim Turrentine, Ron Johnston, Gregg Lewis, and Chuck Roszel, all of whom are good fathers to my grandchildren. I do not want to make readers dizzy with numbers but I also report that four of my grandsons. Gilbert Crouse, jr., Steven Turrentine. Joshua Hearn and Joey Johnston and four of my grandsons-in-law, Jack Yoest, Ricky Davis, Steven Hensiek and Philip Rogers are also wonderful father's to our 18 great grandchildren. Our family is blessed with wonderful men.

Father's Day is a holiday for all of us because each one of us comes to Father's Day as we came to Mother's Day thinking of our own Dad or Mom or some special man or woman in our life who was father ot mother to us, rather than some honor due us if we are also a father or a mother.

David Blankenship has written a book entitled, Fatherless America.” Blankenship states that when a father dies, his fatherhood lives on in the head and the heart of his child if the family and friends seek to keep his memory alive and when they finds ways to help compensate for the father’s absence.

He says that in this sense the child is still fathered.

Looking back I know I was profoundly influenced by my mother telling me about my father who died when i was nine.  My dear mother  told me what a great farmer he was... hard working for his family...how he prayed for me…how on his death bed he prayed for each child by name…that they would come to know Jesus.

I read an article recently entitled, “A Father’s Death Leaves Love Behind.” William Maddox writes about his father-in-law, a man he never met because the dad died when his wife was only three.

His wife’s Dad had been a musician who sang in a quartet and had cut a few records. Maddox said his wife’s father’s legacy lived on because his words and music had a profound influence on his wife’s upbringing.

My father, Benjamin Wilson Baird had a profound influence on me even though he died when I was nine. I would hear other children say, “I want to be a nurse “or “I want to be a policeman when I grow up” and I would think, “I want to be a Christian like Papa.” His Christian influence was a greater legacy for me than any amount of money or property he could have left me.

My mother’s dad also died when she was a baby. Mama told me one day, when other children would wear a new dress or shoes and say, “my papa bought them for me” she would feel sad and think, “If my Papa was still alive, I would have new things…”

I am glad for movements like “PROMISE KEEPERS” and other movements among men to help them and to help us all to realize how much men are needed in the lives of children and how rewarding it is for men to grow old with offspring who love and respect them because of the love and attention they gave to their children when they were young.

I especially remember one man in our congregation at East Point Avenue Church, who had two daughters. Both were beautiful young married women with 2 children each when I knew them. For the four years I was pastor there, on every Father’s day, these two daughters and their entire family drove a great distance to proudly sit with their Dad on Fathers Day.

These daughters loving attention to their Dad in his old age spoke volumes to me about a Father’s legacy.

At a Memorial Service at our church Conference a few years ago, Bishop Bevel Jones preached and one of the things he said was about Aristotle Onnasis, who amid his millions, never had a cause he supported. Jones said, “To leave no estate is not a disgrace but to leave no legacy is a tragedy.

The influence of a father cannot be over emphasized. Studies have shown that when a father is missing, absent from the home, there is a hole in the child that cannot quite be filled. I believe one of the greatest gifts a mother can give her child is to love his or her father. The commandment to love one another is not an arbitrary law, but directions for joyful and happy living.

Fortunately, the Bible teaches there is a remedy. Many of the great leaders of past generations have filled this space, this hole left by an absent father with the Heavenly Father. The Psalmist David tells us even if my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will take me up. God is able to take all kinds of tragedy and bring about good when we commit our live to him. But the number of single women raising children without a father or God in their lives is sad.


Terrell said...

It is interesting and inspiring to think that a farmer -- one who never traveled widely, who had little formal education, and who, after raising his older children on other folks farms, fighting bollweevil and depression, had to move his large family to a small mill town, manages in 2007, seventy-five years after his death, to still exert a positive influence. We have a wonderful heritage -- one of which I am enormously proud.

Carol said...

Great post. I adores my father - and still miss him greatly. I wish I could have known your father.

Anonymous said...

Terry..thanks for your comment...yes, probably i am the last family member living who remembers my father... Lavay and Marian both were six ...i do not know if they has any memory of him or not.

Carol ..thanks for your comment...Yes, I adored your daddy too. He was a precious and good man.

Jane said...

Aunt Ruth, this is such a beautiful tribute to fathers.
I especially loved what you said about Granddaddy Baird praying for each of his children by name as he was dying. His main concern that they come to know Christ. What a powerful image that is.
I am thankful to have had a wonderful dad. He loved me unconditionally and gave me more than money could buy. I miss him terribly.

Anonymous said...

How I miss my Dadddy! And yet, even though I was an adult when he died, he still fathers me in many ways.

I bought a nativity scene, handmade out of wood, yesterday and thought, this is something my Daddy would have liked. He would have used it as a pattern to make these for Christmas gifts.