Posted by: rundadrun | April 17, 2011

Thanks for the memories, Dad

Today would have been my father-in-law’s 80th birthday.  I am not one of those people who make it a point to remember a birthday after someone passes away, but this year, dad’s birthday was on my mind.

Before he passed away from multiple myeloma in 1997, he had been a preacher for over 40 years.  I can honestly say that he was a huge influence on me and I consider him a real father figure in my faith.  His love of God and his love for his wife and family taught me what being a man of God should look like.  It was a very hard time when he passed away, but it was also a wonderful visual of living your faith all the way to the end.  He touched so many hearts with his life of preaching and with his faith, even in the face of death.

As the family was coming together in the hospital as Dad was nearing the end, I was amazed by the number of people who came to share this time with all of us.  Instead of just tears, there was singing, laughter and stories of a life well lived.  After he passed away and everyone was in the family area, I was approached by one of the nurses.  She told me that she was touched by the way things went.  In most cases she told me, there is nothing but sadness coming from a terminal patient’s room.  She wanted me to know that she and the other nurses were moved by the love and joy that was evident with our group.  She said she could tell that we were Christians by the way we acted in the face of such a sad time.

I always try to teach our Junior High Bible class that our faith is always showing, even in times of trial.  How we handle hard times, like sickness and death is as important as how we live in times of happiness.  My father-in-law preached till the end, and we were all blessed by his life.

I hope that I can use my life to touch others for God the way my father-in-law did.  I learned so much from him.  I learned that you can’t love and honor your wife too much.  I learned that my life should be an outpouring of the love that God has blessed me with.  I am blessed beyond belief.  And on a comical note, I learned probably the most important lesson for a long-lasting, happy marriage.  One night at dinner, before I married his daughter, he shared a truly valuable marriage secret…”Just know when to shut up”.  I don’t always do the best job at that, but I try.

So, Happy Birthday Dad!  One day, all the people who you blessed with your life of service will be together with you again.  Until then, enjoy the well deserved rest.

Happy running,




  1. Your entry about your Father-in-law, is one step in touching people’s lives.

  2. I mean one step closer, 😀 I really like your entry.

    • Thank you, I hope his life continues to touch others. He was a truly great man.

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