What to give for Father's Day?
Linda Soller | Jun 17, 2013
For some reason I have always found it difficult to buy just the right gift for the men in my life. It seemed the more thought and creativity I put in to it the less they liked the gift. As my children grew older I noticed they took my gift suggestions for their dad under advisement, but they started to come up with ideas of their own. I also noticed he seemed to like the ideas they dreamed up better than mine and I wondered why. To say I began to second guess myself in the area of gift giving to male family members is an understatement. My poor nephews have gotten more than their fair share of gift cards and cash because I was certain they would not like anything I selected. Now my sons-in-law will face years of my gift giving insecurity. How sad is that? My brother has seemed to accept my selections with more enthusiasm, but it could be he just really likes getting gifts even when they are lame.
I must blame some of my insecurity in this area on my father. He was never one to make over gifts. He would always say thank you but it was hard to read what he really thought. To make matters worse he had a June birthday, so I would have to come up with two gifts in less than 30 days. This was a strain on my constitution to say the least. I would start worrying about it in April. Part of me felt that he really could end up having too many golf shirts, despite what my mother would tell me. I’m ashamed to admit that he’d also fallen victim to my gift card solution.
Yesterday was Father’s Day and the first since my father passed away. What I would not give to have had to buy a gift this year. In our world with starvation, war, disease, poverty, and disasters it suddenly hit me how very small my worries about gifts are in the big picture of life. I shake my head thinking of the time lost worrying and fretting about such things, time better spent doing something productive. Why is it that we so often don’t appreciate the opportunities we have in life until they are no longer available? My revelation went deeper as I thought back over the years and realized that what my dad, your dad, and all the fathers of the world want is for their children to be safe, to be happy, and to honor them by the way they live their lives.
Throughout the Bible we read of fathers and their sacrifices. Jesus taught us that we are the children of God, and we are to honor our fathers and mothers. The prodigal son returned to the open arms of his father. Over and over fathers sought Jesus’ healing for their children. Yet we struggle with what to give our fathers to show our love and appreciation. What can we give? Jesus taught us to love and honor God, our father, to serve and show devotion, to honor him by living our faith, to care for others as he cares for us, to live by his commandments, to be joyful in his love, and to teach others what we have learned from him.
Fathers have a tough job, and I think what they really just want is our love and to know that through the years we have learned to apply what they taught us to be better people. Even the fathers who were not such great examples probably hope that their children will learn from their mistakes. And the fathers who don’t get to spend much time with their children probably hope that their love transcends the distance between themselves and their family. I think those are the gifts our father’s want, gifts from our hearts. I don’t have to buy a Father’s Day gift this year, but I can give my father something none the less. This year I can give him the promise to honor his memory and live a life that would make him proud. I can give that promise, that gift, because of all he has given to me.
Have a great week :o) Linda