Today is my fathers birthday! (It is also Megan's) He is 46, which makes him 26 years older than me. I think it would be fair to say that there is no one on this entire planet who is more like me than my Dad is, or probably, no one who I am more like.. he did come first therefore I am probably a model of him rather than the other way round. My Dad is my hero. When I was little he used to take me on camps with him occasionally and they are some of my favourite memories. More recently I have been helping him run/lead some camps and that has been even greater fun!
Dad was always larger than life. 6ft2in tall and built this is fairly obvious but more than just his physical presence he was always doing crazy awesome things like abseiling, bridge swinging, hiking, canoeing, and playing sport. I think he will always be in my head the immensely strong man who cared for, protected and loved me as a four year old kid.
I did not always acknowledge the level of respect I have for my father, though I think it's always been not far from the surface, and in my early teenage years we argued and fought a lot, mostly because I was vocal and ignorant (funny how they go together) and knew exactly how to push Dads buttons. As I said, we are very alike and so winding him up came naturally for me. Winding people up in general seems to be a gift of mine, however, while mostly this is a humorous trait when it came to Dad it often lacked the funny side and was more about me being counter-dependant for the sake of it.
To my great relief, I grew up a little and the respect for Dad surfaced once more. He is where I turn when I need advice, when I need help, when I have questions, and when I need money ;P He is the person I admire most in this world and he is who I model myself on, the standard against which I measure myself. I would be very happy at the end of my life if I could say nothing more than that I measured up to my Dad.
I know that Dad is getting older. Something brought into focus by my own age, which worries me so add 26 on top... And I also know that, like me, he feels younger than he is and does not like some of the changes that time is bringing. They are different changes for each of us but the affect seems to be fairly similar. Change happens and there is not much we can do about it, but to try and hold on to the past will only make it worse, it's something I'm learning to let go of and to be satisfied with where I'm at and even await the changes that the Lord will bring in me in time.. with hope. I pray the same for Dad and have a feeling that with 26 extra years of wisdom he might just!
I love you Dad. Happy Birthday!