Tag Archives: courageous

My Father, My Hero!

Just a couple of days ago, we celebrated my father’s 50th birthday. This year, instead of just having our usual family dinner, we added something extra special!

We wanted to include as many people as possible without having to throw a huge party for a rather private person. So for a surprise, my mother and I collected messages from people from various parts of my father’s life – church, family, childhood and work. And to keep it all a secret, all communication and preparation had to be done on my laptop instead of the family computer (My mum got something out of all this preparation too. She learnt how to use a Mac!).

It was fun trying to keep everything a secret, with some of my father’s friends getting somewhat overly excited. It definitely wasn’t easy dealing with people coming up to my mom or me asking how the celebration went or is coming along when my father was standing right there! And some even wished him a “happy birthday” a little too early because they misunderstood my email! But overall, my father enjoyed getting so many wishes over the course of the past few weeks, even though most of the wishes came on the wrong day.

The messages were a way of appreciating him. It was also to honor my father – by showing him that he has indeed been a blessing not just to us, his family but many others as well.

As I looked back on the preparation leading up to D-Day, the influence that my father has had on the people around him is obvious.

In my father’s long…no, short lifetime so far (OK Papa, you’re still very young), he has been a positive influence although he did ruffle some people here and there. Here are some notes that people have written about him,

 “A source of inspiration, support and kindness to all who know him”

A joy to have around”, “Such a joker”

A COURAGEOUS Leader, Teacher and a Good Father”

A very lovable and genuine guy”

Observing his response (huge smiles and positive comments) as he read each message on the PowerPoint slides, I’m glad that we collated these messages for him. Even big and strong fathers can do with encouragement from time to time.

Have you appreciated your loved one lately? If not, all it takes is a word or two to put a smile on that person’s face


Caring for the Courageous

Inspired by the movie, Courageous, I’ve been making some personal observation about the women behind Courageous men whom I personally know.

In the words of the producers, “Hollywood produces movies to entertain and make money at the box office. Courageous was made to change lives.” The movie has the potential to change the family climate and it is certainly changing the lives of not only the men but the wives as well.

It takes a Courageous man to answer the call and fully resolve to stay committed to a standard above mediocrity and be more than just a “good enough” father and/or husband.

I realized that he can’t do it alone. The Courageous man is not immune to the challenges, discouragement and temptations that abound when he devotes himself to making and keeping commitments that will bring him and his family all the blessings and joy.

Author Kay Arthur puts it so aptly – that one of the greatest fears that dominate husbands in particular, is the fear of being found inadequate.

After being married for almost 20 years and learning from many other marriages, I’ve ascertained that a wife is the best person to help alleviate this fear. It comes down to my three “As” – my Attention, my Admiration and my Affirmation.

It is not often articulated, but my husband desires to know more than anything that I trust him and that I believe in him. He is fulfilled when he senses that despite his inadequacies, I see the possibilities and potential God has given him; I recognize and support his divinely wired role as the leader and provider of our family.

Being that voice of support, confidence and encouragement is a morale booster to him. It quells the continual struggle against any sense of inadequacy that smolders inside of him.

The truth is that I’ve not always been that voice. I recall the earlier years of our marriage – I was so naturally quick to criticize and correct my husband’s actions. There were times when I felt justified in what I said because I think that’s the way he ought to feel about himself after what he’s done or not done! Nothing can be more damaging and destructive to him and to me and the entire family. It took me quite a while though to realize what was happening.

Our men aren’t perfect. Neither are they delusional, they know it too even if they are not quick to admit it. But just like you and me, he is not to be defined by his imperfections. Sure there are times for talking plainly and honestly about things he needs to improve and watch out for. But I’ve learned my lesson that it will go a long way for me to choose wisely what I say, how I say and when to say.

Our cutting, nagging comments can wound him deeply, especially when any disapproval and resentment are unresolved and accumulated over time. It makes him feel belittled and insignificant, beaten down and discouraged. What we think of as no more than a little jab about a specific incident becomes a stabbing wound that can leave a hole in his heart.

Yet equally powerful are our simple, honest, even casual compliments.  When we make it our resolution to remind them of the potential and possibility that lies within them – not because we are patronizing or manipulating them but because we truly believe it – they feel on top of the world. This is one sure way to care for the Courageous.

I trust that the unwavering assurance of my support and devotion will inspire him to greater things than he’s proven capable of before, breakthroughs that would bring forth a richer blessing and depth of relationships to our family.

Indeed I can say that “My husband is a rich man because he has a strong faith, children who love him and a wife who adores him.”

“To my husband, Ben – my resolution is to be faithful to you and honor you in my conduct and conversation, help you reach your God-given potential and to serve you well as a wife and to be the kind of woman who truly blesses her man. I pray that when the curtain closes on my time here on earth, you will be able to confidently say that I was a woman of resolution.”