Today would have been my daddy’s 60th birthday, but on May 18th the Lord saw fit to take him. I know God is good (Luke 18:19) & he does all things well (Mark 7:37), but it still hurts today. Also, today just happened to be a Tuesday & every Tuesday my dad would call me at 10am. We would discuss all sorts of topics, but inevitably we would talk about the Atlanta Braves, Clemson Tiger football, ping-pong & Jesus.
These were my daddy’s life. I would love to be able to talk to him about Bobby Cox managing his last game last night as the Braves lost in the NLDS & how things would have been different if Chipper Jones didn’t get hurt. I would love to talk to him about Clemson losing another close game & how upset we both are that South Carolina won. I would love to listen to him tell me again how great he is at ping-pong & how he can still “smoke” those younger men that he played with several times a week. How many times do I need to hear that he came back from 8 or 9 down to beat someone? Well, I would like to hear it one more time.
But most of all, I would love to tell my daddy that I will be teaching from Genesis 4 tomorrow night & preaching from James 4:11-17 this Sunday. He would take whatever I was preaching on & read it every day until we spoke again the following week. And then he would ask me again, “Son, how long does it take you to write your sermons?” To which I would reply every week, “I just depends… but usually 15-20 hours.” “Remarkable!” was all he would say. I’m still not sure what he meant & would love to ask him now.
My daddy wasn’t a perfect man. He was a fallen sinner that was graciously redeemed by Jesus. He lived in fear. He died lonely. But today, on his 60th birthday, he isn’t fearful anymore. Today he isn’t alone. He’s with Jesus and in Jesus’ “presence there is fullness of joy & pleasures forevermore” (Psalm 16:11).
Happy Birthday Pop!