Becoming a parent has allowed my eyes to be opened to the sacrifice and hard work that went into my becoming who I am. Looking back there are all kinds of great memories for me growing up. I remember our trips to the mountains, Washington D.C., Maine, and all of those times we went to Universal Studios because Florida residents got in for a discounted rate! I remember those Saturdays, holidays, and summer vacations when my dad would come get me out of bed and “make” me go to work with him. I remember my mom taking me to the chiropractor, the doctor, and the hospital all those times when they were trying to find a cure for my epilepsy. I remember my mom sitting there crying, holding me, because she was helpless in the situation.( I can now understand why!) Most of all, I remember my parents on their knees praying. They modeled prayer and Christian living for my sister and I. They taught us that Godliness was not how you acted on Sunday but how you lived your life Sunday to Sunday.
My parents were not abusive, alcoholics, or addicted to any other vice that altered who they were as parents. My sister and I had the privilege of going to sleep each night, with no concern as to if one of them would still be there the next day. They argued from time to time, but there arguments were resolved and they modeled forgiveness in front of us.
There are some things that I look back on and wish they had been different, and there are times when my parents were less than perfect. But my sister and I are truly blessed to have been raised in the environment that we were raised in and our goal is to carry on that tradition to our children. So I am thankful for my mom and dad!
Not only have I been blessed to have great parents but God has blessed me with my wife’s parents as well.
My wife has been privileged as well to have been raised with Godly parents and in a similar environment as mine. They are the reason my wife is as spectacular as she is!
When I first began dating Valerie, Glenn & Sandy welcomed me into their home and treated me like one of their own. I have never felt out of place or like a stranger in their home. In fact I thought I must have been their favorite until I got to know them and realized that they treat all people this way. They literally give of themselves to the point that they do without so that others can receive. They have shown me that ministry is not what is at the church per se, but what you are doing for others.
Glenn has always accepted me, and been there when I needed advice about something and he was supportive when I packed up his daughter and moved her to Atlanta (even though I know he didn’t like it). We have worked side by side in his business, and we have worked together building the new facilities at our church. I have learned much from him and am thankful for his influence. Sandy has been great as well. I am amazed at how she is always thinking of others and putting herself last. She and I have a similar sense of humor and unlike some I love my “mother- in -law”. She is the one who motivated me to teach youth several years ago, and I will always be thankful for her trusting me with that privilege.
So to my parents and my “other parents” I say “Thank You”! Thank you for all your hard work and dedication and for modeling your lives in such a way that God is glorified and His working is manifested in your lives! My wife and I are honored to have been raised by you and we are so happy our children will benefit from you as well!
Be sure to tell your Parents how much you are thankful for them today!
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. – Ephesians 6:1-4 ESV