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Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine
O what a foretaste of glory divine
Heir of salvation, purchase of God
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood
Perfect submission, all is at rest
I in my Savior am happy and blessed
Watching and waiting, looking above
Filled with His goodness, lost in His love
This is my story, this is my song
Praising my Savior all the day long
This is my story, this is my song
Praising my Savior all the day long
Oh what a Savior, wonderful Jesus
The first time I remember hearing this song was my father singing in the living room of our house, Mom playing the piano while Dad sang along.  My parents were young, barely in their mid twenties, young not only in age or as parents, but also young in their faith.  One of the most beautiful blessings of my life has been watching the two people who brought me into this world grow together in God’s love, their relationship flourishing in the light of the God that they put first.. together.
Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine
Through my dad, I learned what it is like for a person to truly seek God, who really wanted to live out what they believe.  Dad has never been perfect, something that I have learned to appreciate as I realize how imperfect we all are, how children first see a father who is flawed yet becomes the best person as we experience life through the same eyes, the eyes of a father.  As the years have past, as my own life becomes shared through the same experiences he has experienced, as I see how my father has become one of the best people on this planet, I love him more and more.  Dad’s example led me to believe in Jesus, to want to seek God, and to see God in a genuine way.  If you knew my dad, you would understand what I am talking about.  When he sings Jesus is mine, it’s because it is true in a way that is very, very evident.
My father is more of a friend, yet still my father, these days.
FB_IMG_1518484760289Today is his birthday.  He is 76 years old.  I walked past this photo of him this morning, one I display on my fireplace mantel, and I realize how much like him I have become.. so glad that I have.  I don’t know how old he was when this picture was taken, but it must have been early teens.. he was losing his hair before he was twenty.  A friend saw that picture and told me how much I resemble my father, something that I didn’t realize before.  As I have aged, I resemble him more than my mother.  I am glad that I do and am glad that I resemble him in more ways than one.
At least I hope so.  You see, my father has shown me and everyone who knows him a character that is to not only to be admired, it is to be coveted.  This is a man who has been faithful to the same woman nearly 60 years.  She adores him for the man that he is, praises him for his love and support.  I have seen my parents grow together, fight for their love through disagreement, fiercely defend the other and put the other first above anything or anyone else.  If I had an ounce of the character shown to me over the years, I would be a much better person.  As my mother has grown sick the past few years, Dad has patiently cared for her despite the difficulties.  Does he do it without complaint?  No.  He has vented to me a few times, yet I know that he doesn’t take it out on her.  He needs her like she needs him.  Yes, I wish I had what they have.  Sadly, when it came to a wife, I didn’t get the same blessing, wish I had learned a little more from my father what it means to nurture his wife.  Dad loves my Mom, prays with her, shares with her in a way that would make anyone jealous of what they have.
Filled with His goodness, lost in His love.
Dad is a man who loves, loyal to a fault.  Dad cries tears of pride, openly proud of my brothers and I, of friends.  He has shown me what it means to work hard — built several houses for his family while working a difficult full time job.  Yet he still had time to show my brothers and I how to play baseball (and play the game with us when we got older), take us on countless camping trips, read the Bible with us, lead and taught at church, and showed us the value of family.  He is a leader, not just in the community but in our family, something my brothers and I as well as our mother has never doubted.  The man is as strong as can be, vital yet at 76 years, his energy and enthusiasm for life still a great example.  To say that my father is a good man is an understatement.  In it all, it is real obvious where my father draws his goodness.  He has learned a lot through his journey through life, a life that has been spent looking towards heaven.
This is my story, this is my song.  Praising my savior all the day long.
That is dad.  It really is.  I am glad for the blessing of the best father a man can have, one I can look up to, a man I can only only to be some day.  He is my father, a father that celebrate today.