The above picture is of my Dad hugging me following the completion of my first marathon back on April 13th - after waiting out in the snow, sleet, ice, wind and rain for hours with the rest of my family and friends that so lovingly supported me that day. To follow is what he wrote about my accomplishment in my Race Report post here on my blog. I'm sure he won't mind me sharing, though he is one of the most humble men I know:
"You know I am not a man of many words (that's why I married mom) but your posting yesterday was quite moving. I know we felt a lot of your pain waiting at the finish line for you. You are truely an insperation to all. You have so much faith, hope and love and it show on Sunday. I am truely proud you are my son. Love, Dad"
I can't even begin to express how meaningful his words were to me because, he's right, he's not a man of many words. But, even more importantly, I was so moved by what he had to say about me because of the utmost respect I have for him as a father, and always have, as a man of integrity, strength, and character.
In the Bible, Proverbs chapter 20, verse 7 says, "The righteous man walks in his integrity; his children are blessed after him." I would have to say I am surely blessed, and I pray my girls will be also someday in being able to speak the same of me in having come to live a life of integrity.
Happy Father's Day, Dad. You've been an awesome example of what it means to be a father of character, quiet strength, humility, and integrity to me. I love you!
Your grateful son,
For my friend, Joe, who just lost his father Thursday, I am so very sorry for your loss and my heart aches along with you.