Friday will be Daddy's 83rd birthday. I wonder what birthdays are like in Heaven. This will be his third birthday there...his second one with Mother. I can only imagine how they will celebrate! Mother will probably cook his favorite meal of brown beans and cornbread, fried potatoes, "greasy" salad (that's a Southern thing), and either ham or fried hog jowl. (that's another Southern thing...and you're going, "Nasty!") For dessert, she will bake him a lemon meringue pie. That's his favorite, but when he was with us, he always chose something else because he wanted everyone to enjoy his dessert. That's just the way he was...unselfish on every level.
He'll be joined by Mamaw and Papaw, Uncle Paul, Uncle Walter, Grammie and Grandad, Uncle Graham, and many other family members and friends. They will have the best time sitting in lawn chairs outside, in the cool of the evening, around a campfire and telling old stories, laughing until their sides hurt. Uncle Walter will probably have them rolling on the floor with his jokes and then he'll pull out his banjo and they'll all sing awhile and have the best time. They might even strike up a game of "Oh Rats", a card game much like Spades. (which is actually called Oh S***, but my family didn't say cuss words, so we changed the name) They could even have their own Rats Tournament. Picture this...Jesus in the group saying, "Okay, I bid 4." Uncle Walter says, "Thinking big are ya? Well, look out 'cause I'm going to set you if it's the last thing I do!" *GASP* Jesus playing cards! Why not?
Whatever they do, I know it will be on a grander scale than anything we ever did here on earth!
If you've ever lost a loved one, you know that there are certain days that are hard to get through...their birthday, their death day, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Christmas, Thanksgiving, etc... I have tried since losing both of my parents, to view each of those days as a day of celebration instead of sadness. They are in a much better place now, and they are in the presence of their Lord. Their celebrations cannot even compare to ours. How can that possibly be sad? I miss them more words can ever describe and I still have little "meltdowns" here and there, but ultimately, I know where they are and I know I'll see them again someday!
So on Friday, August 14, I will celebrate with Daddy. I will ask the Lord to give him a huge birthday hug from me, give Mother a great big hug and I'll ask Him to please tell them both how much I love them and miss them, and that I expect a chocolate cake with Mother's famous, secret chocolate frosting and homemade banana ice cream when I have my first birthday in Heaven!
Happy Birthday Daddy! Thank you for the life you gave me - for being a godly man, a simple man, a funny man, a loving and devoted husband and Daddy! This is for you...
(I've been working on this video for several days now...hope it works! Just remember to scroll down to the bottom of the page and PAUSE the play list music first)
*For Daddy's service we put together a video montage of pictures. The first song on my playlist, "How Could I Ask For More", was the perfect background for his video tribute, due to the "simple" ways of life we enjoyed growing up. (see one of my earlier blog posts) To make it even more personal, my Sarah sang the song for the video...recorded in a little studio of a friend. So, this is my sweet daughter singing my favorite song for one of the most difficult days of my life. Thank you Sarah! This will forever be a special gift to me!
"For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just..." Genesis 18:19