Most fathers wear a variety of hats in life
Dads, they are a busy lot. And you wonder why?
So let’s have a look. Most fathers wear a variety of hats and if you are one of the fortunate ones to know your Dad in a physical way, you have seen him wear a wide variety of hats while taking care of his obligations. I realize there are some that for one reason or another don’t have this relationship.
I am sorry. I have often tried to remember my first encounter with my Daad and it is a bit fuzzy, but I have heard the stories and seen the pictures and my memories tell me that he was in uniform. First, in the service of our country, where he served as an Army Infantry man in World War II. He and his men were captured at the Battle of the Bulge by German soldiers and remanded to a POW camp. He was one of the lucky ones, liberated and returned home.
My next memory, he and I wore identical uniforms. “Trust your car to the man that wears a star” when he was the owner of a Texaco Service Station. I was about 5, but my uniform had that star! Then he and I became cotton farmers and eventually stockmen on a little spread in Erath County. Well, yes I did have brothers and sisters, but they have their own story.
The years went by as he mentored me in the art of growing up. Sometimes with the “Board of Education.” Actually, the board was his leather belt, And I can still hear it popping the belt loops as he snatched it off and told me that this hurt him more than it did me! I was full grown with my own children before I figured that out.
Along this trail, Dad taught me life lessons. I had opportunity to learn by his example and I hope that I have given my own children that opportunity. My Dad was a Christian, a good steward, my mentor, and my inspiration. His prayer always included “The Lord’s Prayer.” I worried about how smart he was when I was a teenager and now, as I grow older, I marvel at how smart he was all along.
I reflect on his wisdom, thinking about how he taught me to always keep God number one in my life, and about loyalty and love for country and family, kindness and charity toward others, and work ethic and pride in life. And when you think about it, God, our Father who art in heaven, helps us use those same traits.
Just a wee lad, smart for his age, and ready to learn,
He reached up and took his Dad’s hand,
To be just like him, his young mind would yearn,
He knew his Dad rode for the brand.
And so it is, as we all go down life’s trail,
Seeking heroes at any age,
Always looking for approval without fail,
Doing what it takes to engage.
Diligent as we take our turns around the sun,
With time and trials and sacrifice.
Rejoicing in small victories we have won,
Made possible with sage advice.
His Dad would say, “what goes around, comes around,”
Facing good times as well as bad,
Living by principles that are proven to be sound,
Success tends to make your heart glad.
There will be hard times, trials, failures, and a few wins,
Seems like that is how life goes,
We persevere, get back up, face life as it spins,
Accept the blessings God bestows.
Now he would reflect on lessons his Dad would teach,
Those that helped life to go on,
“Keep God first in all that you do,” his Dad would preach,
An’ he said it in a certain tone.
Country and family came next with his advice,
Keep your word and do as you say,
Be fair in your dealings, as you set your price,
Respect all ladies along your way.
He pondered the lessons that his Dad taught,
About how to stay on the trail,
Face adversity head-on as battles would be fought,
Trusting God to help him prevail.
And today, his own son’s eyes have a prideful glow,
As he reaches to take his Dad’s hand,
And his heart blooms while this knowledge seems to grow,
And it all helps one understand.
Yes, it helps you understand, as full circle is made,
You help your Dad from his chair,
And his eyes glow with pride accepting your aid,
While his lips seem to form a prayer.
“Life may have its ups and downs but we are blessed,
Thanking God for all things this day,
Through His work so magnificently manifest,
Never let us forget to pray!”
And he thanks God for a son that chose this trail,
God’s plan for mankind no doubt,
While miracles and life’s mysteries unveil,
To help full circle came about.
© Ol’ Jim Cathey
Happy Fathers Day and God Bless America!