Per Fidem Intrepidus means "Fearless Through Faith". My courage isn't my own, it comes from the Holy Spirit, it's my faith in God and my personal savior Christ Jesus that calms my fears and allows me to move forward in this fallen world. Personally I'm afraid of a lot of stuff, but having the faith that Jesus adopted me as his little, sin filled, brother keeps me going.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

My Best Fathers Day.

Months ago, it seems like years ago, my bride and I had planned to spend Fathers Day first in our home church (I was scheduled to be greeter too), then by attending a Tim Hawkins concert (VIP Seating, etc!) then maybe a 'steak bake' out on the patio with the kids and my favorite 4 year old, or possibly a drive up into the mountains with my love to find a little place we've never found before. I normally don't make plans far in advance but for a chance to see Tim Hawkins I'll buy my tickets months in advance and probably spend too much money on the Plus Package. Then dad had his surgery... 

So instead of Fathers Day morning coffee on the patio and watching the sunrise glint off the mountains as I read a chapter from John, I spent Fathers Day morning following an ambulance to a hospital in Florida. 

Dad had a surgery that he had been putting off for years, eventually the condition got severe enough to be life threatening so he finally agreed to have the surgery at 82 years old. There were a couple complications and in the end he had three operations and spent 3 weeks in the hospital, nearly a full week of that either under anesthesia or knocked unconscious with medications. Dad has never responded well to anesthesia, and now after being nuked on morphine and other drugs his mental state is in such a flux it's hard to tell from one moment to the next who occupying the mind of the man in dad's recliner.

Conversation is difficult, he's saying things like "The house we used to own in Florida was cranberry." We are in the only house he's ever owned in Florida and there's not a cranberry in sight. Some of his diatribes are amusing, like when he believed he spent the evening with New York State Troopers stealing "instant hamburgers" from a house in Rochester because the people in Rochester wouldn't help him bowling. Some are heart breaking like when he believed that someone came in the room and told him he had 300 days to live. Of course I calmed him down and told him it was just a dream, but believing that angels and demons and the world unseen is a true promise of God I'm also doing math in the back of my head... 300 days... April.

There are good days and bad as dad either fights the fog or succumbs to it. Fathers Day was a bad day. He woke in a lot of pain and said it was pretty intense. He was in such agony we called an ambulance terrified that something went wrong with all the plumbing work that was recently done. When mom, my sister, and I arrived at the hospital we found dad resting in the ER, the surgeon who did the work on him previously was on duty that day and responded to the ER when dad came in. The doctor pronounced dad to be fine and the pain he felt was normal post surgery pain. We took dad home soon after.

But that day was surely fathers day, the delirium never abated and the rest he needed to recover from surgery and all the drugs was denied him. In the end I ended up caring for my father the same as he once cared for me and the same as I once cared for my own children, although they were easier to pick up off the floor and much easier to clean up after accidents.

But it's been three decades since I've been able to spend Fathers Day with dad, so my Father in heaven made sure this one Fathers Day, maybe our last together, would be one that taught the son to love the father and marvel in awe at the Father. So many lessons can be learned while cleaning up a mess, and the humility learned cannot be bought at any price. At no time did Psalm 127:3 ever pop into my head,  nor did Exodus 20:12, and it had to be pointed out to me that it was the only commandment that has a blessing attached. I'm just doing what needs to be done because I love my dad and my Father.

Sure, I would have probably preferred spending Fathers Day sitting Front Row Center at the Tim Hawkins concert, or maybe a lazy day down here in Florida fishing with Dad on the Indian River lagoon with no bait on the hook to cause a fish to bother us, but God is wise, He knows what I want, but best of all He knows what I need. 

No comments:

Post a Comment