The definition of memory is that which is remembered of a person or thing. How does one adequately express in words what another person has meant to them? Many have tried - the themes of thousands of books - but are they adequate? Robert Browning wrote: "How do I love thee; let me count the ways." But did he, could he? We search for that just-right card that expresses our deepest thoughts, and invariably fall so short.
|Our last Christmas with Daddy, 1993|
After our dad died, my youngest sister compiled a book of "Our Memories" made up of written thoughts by many, many people whose lives had been impacted by the man we called Daddy. One person wrote a short but apt description:
"He was a complex man and highly intelligent who thought deeply about life. The world he left behind is a much better place for having been there."
Another wrote: "We should not so much grieve that such a man has died, as to praise God that such a man lived."
"Porter, a man! Gentle, loving, kind, patient, unselfish and yet so strong, uncompromising in his convictions, always hopeful."
My contribution was a letter I had sent my dad for Father's Day on June 15, 1986, several years before his death. I'd like to share that as my memory of this special man.
for being a Christian Father
for living before us your commitment to God first
for the example of what servanthood is all about
for your love and unquestionable devotion to Mother
for the way you relate to others
for always “being there”
for keeping the channels open
for what I’ve learned by your attitudes and actions
for always communicating love
for the twinkle of pride and respect I’ve seen in your eyes
for the time you’ve spent with me
for a sense of security
for making me feel important
for listening and hearing what I didn’t say
for affirming me even through condemnation
for loving my family
for giving of yourself
for that word of encouragement, arm around the shoulder, wink of the eye, not of the head
for your smile
for your sometimes strange sense of humor
for giving me the ideal example of fatherhood
for helping me to not be satisfied with less for my children
for giving to us all the greatest gift one person can give another – an example of God’s love
I love you Dad!