May 20, 2024

“And he will turn the hearts of fathers to their children
and the hearts of children to their fathers…”
– Malachi 4:6

I am the father of two fine sons. When the youngest left home for college, my wife and I entered a new phase of our lives. The empty nest was a reality and I would be lying if I said I didn’t miss them. After years of adjusting schedules, attending ball games and constant action, it was quiet. Too quiet! I often found myself thinking about their growing up years and all the times we spent playing catch, pretending to score the game-winning touchdown or just enjoying each other’s company. Where did the time go? Sometimes, in our moments of reflection, we need a good laugh and I found this story in the pages of Chicken Soup for the Soul.

During the 1966-1967 football season, Green Bay Packer quarterback Bart Starr, had a little incentive scheme going with his oldest son. For every perfect paper Bart Jr. brought home from school, his dad gave him ten cents. After one particular rough game in which Bart Sr. felt he had performed poorly, he returned home weary and battered late at night after a long plane ride. He couldn’t help feeling better when he went to his bedroom where attached to his pillow was a note that read, “Dear Dad, I thought you played a great game. Love Bart.” Taped to the note were two dimes! One day, we will wake up to the reality that they are gone. The time goes faster than you think. Make time for your family, especially your children. Take time to play together, laugh together and to tell them you love them.

Heavenly Father, thank You for the gift of being a dad. Help me to remember they are mine for only a little while, but they are Yours for eternity. Teach me to make my family a priority today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.  

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