Today my Father celebrates his 51st Birthday and I am overjoyed and grateful to have such a wonderful Father, Man of God, Spiritual Overseer, and Friend in my life. This year I wanted to give him something a little different in addition to the material gifts that he will receive from me. Instead of just saying “Happy Birthday Dad!” I wanted to show him exactly what his life has actually meant to me over the years.
Please brace yourself because the beginning is not pretty.
I know hate is a strong an ugly word, but it is the real emotion that I felt on the inside of me towards my Father. I know you’re wondering what could he have done to make me feel this way. Well honestly he did nothing but obey the voice of God. I know that may not be enough for you, but to me it was major. You see obeying the voice and call of God totally disrupted my normal family life.
My parents went into ministry when I was 13, so the PK life was not known to me nor desired, and everything soon changed. You see, I was more than comfortable going to the church we had been attending, and was eager to finally join the Youth Ministry (I no longer had to sneak into their events) after many years in the Children’s Ministry, to only be told the week before that my dream would never become a reality. I was livid. I can’t say that I didn’t see it coming because not only did my parents serve in the Youth Ministry and other areas extensively, they allowed the Youth to always be in our home. Eating up my food, watching my T.V., laying on my couch, calling my parents Mom and Dad! Ohhhh that burned me up. That is where the seed of discontent and jealousy was first planted, which soon grew into an ugly plant of hatred once fully grown. They counseled many teens and adults and I felt it began to take away from our home life. Didn’t matter that they were serving God every chance they got, all I cared about was ME ME ME. I began to see changes in them and I didn’t like it not one bit.
Hate. An emotion so strong that whenever my Father stepped foot inside our house or was in my presence I was immediately enraged and annoyed. So much so that i refused to call him Dad, I went out of my way to avoid saying it at all costs. Imagine a young dainty female with hate brewing on the inside. Truly ugly. Although the enemy placed hate on the inside of me, I realized I never hated my Father as a person but I hated the righteousness that he walked in. I wanted to live my life like every normal person, have normal parents, do normal things. But that wasn’t His plan for my family. We were to touch and impact the lives of others and I wasn’t on board by any means. We weren’t called to be normal but to stand out and I resisted like a child not wanting to eat his/her vegetables. I kicked, screamed, threw things, all to resist the calling that was placed on our family. So much so that I would get upset with my Mom for submitting to my Father, little did I know the enemy was using me to tear down their marriage, my family, my Father and most importantly the ministry. That was his goal from day one, and we all know that the enemy likes to use those close to us to tear us down.
It took me years to catch on to his schemes and when I did I was ashamed and wanted to hide myself like Adam and Eve, for now my eyes had been opened to the ugly truth. During my sophomore year in High School my Father found a lump under his arm and was soon diagnosed with cancer. He went through Chemotherapy, losing weight and hair, and being sick, something he never was. Only the 4 members of my family knew. Through it all he never showed any signs of weakness in front of us. What did I do during all of this you ask? I began to dream about his funeral and how great our lives would be afterwards. I never once took into account that my brother and I would be Fatherless, my Mother without the love she’s known since Middle School, my Grandparents without their youngest son, or even the church without their Shepard. I only write this to show how deep the hatred ran so you can understand how deep my love runs for this man.
All my years of disobedience, discontent, jealousy, and hatred led me to fall. And fall hard I did because I was committed to doing things my way. During my repentance and restoration with God is when I realized all I had done and the plan the enemy had for me. I no longer regret the past because it made me who I am today and my testimonies will reach those right where they are, and encourage them that there is a man named Jesus ready to rescue them.
I can now appreciate the parents God has chosen for me to have, because they have taught me so much. There isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for them, including laying down my own life. My Father has been the man I look up to, cherish, serve, and who I act just like (whether I like it or not)! I pray that my husband is just like him, and look forward to the day that I can honor my parents in a major way at my wedding (a secret I am keeping until then). I am excited to dance with my Father at my wedding because I know just how grateful I am to have such a great man like him in my life. All the days of my life I will honor him because he chosen to stand even when no one else was and for that I will forever thank God for birthing me into this family. They bring out the very best in me! I am blessed that my Man of God is also my Father, because the teaching never stops at the pulpit.
Happy Birthday Pastor Dad!
I Love you to life!