Daddy’s Home!

Posted on: September 11, 2014, by :

It’s raining today, and though that may not be that big of a deal to some people, it is a huge deal to me.  I grew up in a place where it doesn’t rain much, and when it did rain, it was a big deal.  But more than the fact that our economy relied heavily on rain to support the cotton and cattle industry, rain became a welcomed sight in my heart and mind because it offered a unique opportunity. 

You see, my father has been a cotton farmer for as long as I have been alive, and that is an egregiously difficult occupation to be in when your ability to produce a crop is dependent on a factor, over which, you have no control.  For the Dry-Land (non-irrigated) cotton farmer, work is only half the battle.  Land is prepared, rows are built, chemicals are dispersed, seed is planted, and prayers are raised…

Work can be done, but unless it rains, there is no crop.  Seeds will lie dormant for months in the soil waiting on God to determine their fate, and with it, the fate of the farmer and his family.  But when it rains, work begins to pay off.  Plans begin to come together.  Stress is reduced for the moment, and farmers take a long-overdue break. 

I can remember my dad coming home from the field at the last possible second before the deluge hit.  He prolonged his work as long has he could so that when he finally came home, he could sit back and know that he had done all that could be done to prepare for God’s blessing.  I remember him coming in the front door to our house, taking his shoes off and walking straight to his recliner.  He most often sat, closed his eyes, laid his head back and took a few moments to himself.  His usually stern eyes would soften a bit, and he would even laugh.  My dad would transform in those brief moments as his worries and stress melted away with every drop of rain. 

Seeing this happen began a stirring in my heart that disabled my ADHD brain from focusing on anything but the fact that my dad was home.  I never prayed as hard as I did then.  I prayed that the rain would never stop.  I prayed that my dad could stay this happy, and this refreshed forever… 

I wish today that I had told him that.  I wish that I could have articulated how valuable it was to have him home, but to be honest, I don’t think I understood it then.  I didn’t understand at that time why it meant so much to see my dad home, and to see him happy, but now that I am older, I realize how hard he worked.  I see how much he did to provide for my mom, my brothers, and me.  I shake his hand today and I feel the years of toil those hands have endured, and am reminded of the fact that I am the beneficiary of that work.  Callused hands, scars, and swollen knuckles all backed by a surprisingly strong grip remind me of decades spent subduing Adam’s curse. 

Remarks about the scars or the near constant pain of his body are shrugged away for more pleasant conversation.  Overlooked because of the fact that his eyes were nearly always fixed on his work.  Not the work of raising cotton, but the desire he had to raise sons.  Seasons spent investing, hoping, and praying that God would see fit to pour Himself into our lives.  Hard work in the field always comingled with scriptural references about wisdom, determination, and honor. 

But I have no field. 

How will I teach my son those same lessons?  How will I raise my son to fear the Lord, to work hard, and to be respectful to all people? How will I instill the same work ethic, love for the church, and passion for the scripture that my dad taught us?

I hope it starts with rainy days.  Days where I can take hold of my son and share joy, laughter, and love; days that contrast work with rest.  Days that make rest matter because they are viewed with the backdrop of hard work. 

Sometimes when I get home from work, my son is waiting on me, and even though he is only a year old, he is overjoyed when I walk through our front door.  I hope I remember to take time to be home when I can, to invest in him, and to raise a son who honors me by honoring the Father. 

I hope that when my son is my age, he will look back and be reminded that when dark clouds rolled in and rain came, that daddy was close by. 

3 thoughts on “Daddy’s Home!

  1. Jeremy, I could so relate to your post. Thanks for describing this scene which so many in West Texas can relate to well. My post tomorrow is also about rain…and my mother 🙂 Funny how rain stirs so many great memories. I guess we need to remember that it's only when we do without that we can appreciate the joy of something. Blessings.

  2. I especially liked this post. It is always exciting when you know your dad is about to come home. My brother and I used to wait at the front door for our dad to come home and as soon as his little white Nissan pickup would pull up we would burst through the front door to see who could get to him first. I am grateful for a hardworking father and father-in-law. I am also thankful that my son gets to see his father not only work hard but love what he does.

  3. Well said, Brother. Our sons are our most important crop – our most important opportunity to make disciples. And discipleship simply takes devoted time. No way around it. We must be present to our families, and in so doing, we can communicate the presence of God.

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