I enjoyed Father’s Day today. Actually, I hold that (to paraphrase the response of my dad to us kids when we asked when we would get to celebrate Children’s Day) every day is Father’s Day. After all, fatherhood is a divine gift not given to all men. Those who receive the blessing can either cherish it and use it wisely or else despise and abandon it for selfish or otherwise evil purposes.
Anyhow, Father’s Day always falls on a Sunday, which means that I get to start each one by talking about our Heavenly Father and His love for us through the gift of His own dear Son Jesus Christ. Today I preached on the aftermath of David’s sins involving Uriah and Bathsheba, echoing Nathan by reminding each person present that “You Are the One.” The Law, of course, is obvious. I said to each (and how I longed for an older English that understood the difference between you and thou), “You are the one who continues to sin in thought, word and deed and you are the one who constantly finds special ways to excuse, rationalize, or ignore your own wickedness while still eagerly demanding that God exercise ‘justice’ on all those ‘real’ sinners among whom you constantly find yourself.”
Actually, as I developed the sermon, the Gospel became equally clear and easy to proclaim to each: “You are the one for whom Christ came to earth. You are the one for whom He suffered horribly and for whom He died. You are the one for whom He rose and for whom He will return to resurrect and to bring to live with Him forever.” Tying in today’s Gospel, I then reminded each, “You are the one who has received a marvelous gift: Your sins, which are many, are forgiven. You are the one who knows this and shows this when you love much. This is not to cause God to forgive you but because He has forgiven you.”
After the service and Bible study (which this week was a study of the new hymnal, Lutheran Service Book), The Fair Stephanie took off to Kansas City (actually, Overland Park) for a coaching session with her Sweet Adeline chorus in anticipation of this fall’s international competition in Calgary.
While she did this, I took the younger daughter and the only grandson (child of Daughter Number One) with me to Powell Gardens. There, we toured the trails, sniffed the flowers, and got down with the kid-friendly sounds of The Doo-Dads. Honestly, how could any papa resist Let’s Potty, Peanut Butter in My Ear, or Who’s That Kid in the Mirror? — as well as the rest of their songs?
I then allowed the grand rascal some time in the new fountain in the still under construction Fountain Garden under his auntie’s watchful eye while I renewed our membership. That mission accomplished, we walked out to the car, changed the soggy young man, and headed into KCMO for a dinner rendezvous with my Starter (and, God willing, Finisher) Wife. It being My Official Day, I chose the path of least formal dining, beginning with an appetizer of two pounds of boiled mudbugs and a beverage to cut the dust, followed by a cold glass of tea and a piping hot blackened fish entrée at Jazz: A Louisiana Kitchen.
Mrs. Me cannot eat (allergies) and doesn’t particularly like to watch others eat (think little black eyes, claws, a bunch of legs, and antennae) the crustaceans, but true love is sometimes blind (and at other times takes a brief walk outdoors during the appetizer). Meanwhile, Daughter the Second and Grandson the Only helped me quickly polish off the crawfish and the two orphan boiled potatoes that sat among them (read down in the linked Wikipedia article). While she’d eaten them with me many times while we lived in Deep East Texas (Jasper) and a few times since, it was his first taste — a “taste” that turned into almost a full third of the pile set before us.
Once we were done, Steph and I drove home (I kept the kids) to peacefully conclude what could have been a very hectic day. Prayers have been said, teeth brushed, and hugs and kisses exchanged. Now everyone but I lies sleeping. Tomorrow’s my normal “Sabbath Day,” so I sometimes stay up reading or writing on Sunday evening and Monday morning early. As I do so now, the Lord allows me this last look back on a blessed Father’s Day. As I prepare to take in the dogs in anticipation of rain, I consider how today, Laissez les bon temps rouler met Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow ... and how I am better off by their encounter.
Note: Wedding dance picture added later.
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