Most days being a father is thankless, so much so that you don't even think about it --- all the things you do, all that you endure and all that you give by day's end. But most men, even the toughest, of which I am not (the toughest), come face to face with matters that will test and sometimes batter their mettle.
During days or times such as these you may feel that you are alone and no one but maybe God is there. But then compassion comes from the tiniest of places. You hear a small caring voice ask, "Dad, what's wrong?" as I did last week. A voice filled with the love and compassion of all the angels up above. And if you're like me, you answer honestly, or at least as clearly as possible so that young mind you're responding to understands the unnecessary complexities of the world of grown ups.
"It's okay, Dad."
That was my daughter's soft and caring response. She put her small hand first on my shoulder and then on my cheek as she sat in my lap. I felt more compassion than I can describe in this 15-second gesture. I looked into her eyes and she smiled at me. I took a deep breath to keep from crying and ruining her time at the park. In the next breath, nearly half my sorrow was gone.
There is no greater power than the power of love. There is no greater blessing than to have a child who is able to exercise that power.
I am too thankful to be sidelined by the thoughtless actions of men (and women) because of the thoughtfulness of my children.
And my daughter was right. It is okay.
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