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The Proud and Lasting Legacy of Dads

Davis Carman|June 14, 2024

In the spirit of Father’s Day, I can’t resist the temptation to present some classic dad jokes. You want to keep reading. I know you do.

I was at a homeschool conference located on the shores of New Jersey over the weekend. As I was observing the wildlife, I asked myself why seagulls fly over the ocean? Then I realized if they flew over the bay, they would be called bagels. At that moment, I decided I needed to write a book. I only had one limitation, which I didn’t think would be a hindrance. I only knew 25 letters of the alphabet. It’s true. I still don’t know Y.

I hope that made you laugh, even if for a brief moment, but you need to know that being a Dad is no joke. My guess is that one way or the other, for better or worse, your father made a lasting impression on you. We are all a product of our upbringing, and I’m no exception. My father passed away at a young age when I was only 33 years old. And yet, he had a huge influence on my life, probably more than he could have ever known. My dad wasn’t perfect — no father is. But I’m eternally grateful for his godly example, love for my mom, dedication to his family, and perseverance to overcome obstacles and endure trials. Like most young kids, I looked up to my dad and wanted to walk in his footsteps. I was proud to be his son, and he made it clear that he was proud of me. There’s nothing like getting the “thumbs up” from your dad. Even though he’s been gone for three decades, the good memories live on in my mind.

Dads — what do you want your legacy to be? This question should make you pause and reflect on the impact you’ve made, are making, and will make during your lifetime. Your kids need you. You can’t be replaced. There are no substitutes. In other words, only one person in the world is Dad to your children…You! So make the most of it. Don’t squander this massive opportunity to be a key figure in the life of each one of your children. Be intentional and proactive. Please don’t take on a “whatever” attitude. Turn your heart to your kids, and I pray your kids will also turn their hearts to you.

I’m proud to be a Dad and leave a lasting, Godly legacy for my children and grandchildren. In the words of my friend and fellow family man, Todd Wilson: “You ‘da Dad.”

Let me wrap this up with a compilation of notes from your heavenly Father.

My Dear Child,

You may not know me, but I know everything about you (Psalm 139:1). I know when you sit down and when you rise up (Psalm 139:2). I am familiar with all your ways (Psalm 139:3), even the very hairs on your head are numbered (Matthew 10:29-31) for you were made in my image (Genesis 1:27). In me you live and move and have your being, for you are my offspring (Acts 17:28). I knew you even before you were conceived (Jeremiah 1:4-5). I chose you when I planned creation (Ephesians 1:11-12). You were not a mistake for all your days are written in my book (Psalm 139:15-16). I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live (Acts 17:26). You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). I knit you together in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13) and brought you forth on the day you were born (Psalm 71:6).

I have been misrepresented by those who don’t know me (John 8:41-44), I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love (1 John 4:16), and it is my desire to lavish my love on you simply because you are my child, and I am your Father (1 John 3:1). I offer you more than your earthly father ever could (Matthew 7:11) for I am the perfect father (Matthew 5:48). Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand (James 1:17) for I am your provider, and I meet all your needs (Matthew 6:31-33). My plan for your future has always been filled with hope. (Jeremiah 29:11), because I love you with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3). My thoughts toward you are as countless as the sand on the seashore (Psalm 139:17-18), and I rejoice over you with singing (Zephaniah 3:17). I will never stop doing good to you (Jeremiah 32:40) for you are my treasured possession (Exodus 19:5). I desire to establish you with all my heart and all my soul (Jeremiah 32:41), and I want to show you great and marvelous things (Jeremiah 33:3). If you seek me with all your heart, you will find me (Deuteronomy 4:29). Delight in me, and I will give you the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4), for it is I who gave you those desires (Philippians 2:13). I am able to do more for you than you could possibly imagine (Ephesians 3:20) for I am your greatest encourager (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17), I am also the Father who comforts you in all your troubles (2 Corinthians 1:3-4). When you are brokenhearted, I am close to you (Psalm 34:18). As a shepherd carries a lamb, I have carried you close to my heart (Isaiah 40:11).

One day, I will wipe away every tear from your eyes, and I’ll take away all the pain you have suffered on this earth (Revelation 21:3-4). I am your Father, and I love you even as I love my son, Jesus (John 17:23), for in Jesus, my love for you is revealed (John 17:26). He is the exact representation of my being (Hebrews 1:3). He came to demonstrate that I am for you, not against you (Romans 8:31), and to tell you that I am not counting your sins. Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled (2 Corinthians 5:18-19). His death was the ultimate expression of my love for you (1 John 4:10). I gave up everything I loved that I might gain your love (Romans 8:31-32). If you receive the gift of my son Jesus, you receive me (1 John 2:23), and nothing will ever separate you from my love again (Romans 8:38-39). Come home, and I’ll throw the biggest party heaven has ever seen (Luke 15:7). I have always been Father, and will always be Father (Ephesians 3:14-15). My question is…Will you be my child (John 1:12-13)? I am waiting for you (Luke 15:11-32).