~ Dear Dad ~
Hey, you... :)
I miss you...
I don't know why I am finding it so hard to write a letter to you, Dad, but I am... I've tried to write this a hundred times, and a hundred times I've failed. Sometimes I wonder if it's because in doing so I am once again exposing the part of my heart that loves and misses you so much, as well as the part of my heart that deeply regrets the major argument you and I had one month prior to you leaving this world.
In my heart, I see you; I feel you; I know you. Through my heart's eye I see you there, in heaven, on the other side of life, and I am suddenly aware that - now that you're in God's presence - you have perfect 'hindsight'; perfect understanding of life, situations, and why we humans act and react as we do while living in an imperfect world, mind and body... and I just KNOW that you are telling me not to worry about what once was. That all is forgiven and forgotten. I know you're telling me to forgive myself. Through you I am aware that there are no grudges in heaven; no spitefulness; no wishing things could've been different, but, rather, a knowing that all will and does turn out for good.
In my spirit, I hear you saying, "Don't worry about it. It'll be right." I can so clearly hear your voice and the mild, playfully impatient chuckle you used to do, as you longed for me not to worry about whatever it was I was worried about. However, now, through God's heart and Spirit, I feel that's true - that in the end, when we are finally taken to 'the other side', we will be given full understanding and we will finally see how much of life wasn't worth worrying about, and how it is all worth it in the end... because, in the end, what awaits us will be a love like we have never known on this earth; a love that will complete us in every single way, that will last forever and ever and ever...
But I still find it hard to let go of that argument we had prior to your death. I still regret raising my voice to you; of talking to you as though you were worth less than what you were, and are.
Like no one else in this world, you loved me. I always knew you loved me, even though I don't recall you saying it. I just knew. I never doubted your love... and, yet, I never found my worth in your love, in your heart. Rather, I sought my worth in the love - or lack thereof - in the hearts of those who seemed to view me as an inconvenience, or a waste of space.
It was you God used to reveal His love to me, Dad: I was a relatively new Christian, wondering why on earth God could and would love someone like me, and as I was pondering this, He spoke directly to, and in the privacy of, my heart, saying, "If your father had it in his power to heal you, would he...?" His 'still small "voice"' startled me at first, and I hesitated to respond, but on viewing His question, I replied, "...Yes." ...God then went on to ask, "If your father had it in his power to give you everything you need, would he?" I didn't hesitate with this one. This one suited you so well, Dad, and I instantly replied with a hearty "Yes!" ...God then asked, "And if you had a problem and your father had it in his power to solve it, would he?" I replied, "Yes..." and in the next instant God penetrated the aching depths of my heart by firmly, and lovingly, stating, "So would I..." And suddenly I knew He loved me.
Time proved that God would have to find several different ways of convincing me that He loved/s me, and He did, and still does, often, but you were the door He used to open my heart to such a love and the richness of it... Thank you, Dad. Thank you for loving me, faults and all... :/ *grateful tears*
When you died, I was broken. I was so lost without you. Even though I was married, and had been for a long time at this stage, with children of my own, I still felt like a little girl lost when you died. I felt so out of place in this world. I couldn't find where I belonged - as strange as that seems. I felt like an orphan, without a home, without safety... without my dad... :(
Before the tears had dried - after you were taken from this world - I started having nightmares. In them your body would be here, but something else possessed it, and I would be asking others "Doesn't he know he's dead...?" Several times I experienced these dreams, and they brought such fear to me that I could not look at your photo. I was no longer free to love you... I cried for God to take the nightmares and fear away, and His response was, "Every time you think of him, thank him for being your father, and thank Me for giving Him to you..." I did as He instructed, and gratitude soon came to sweep all fear aside... and now, more than ever, I am so very grateful that you were/are my dad.
I love you, Dad. You knew I wasn't perfect, but you loved me anyway. You knew I would make mistakes, but you loved me enough to let me... even though I know you would've preferred I didn't, just so I would never have experienced the disappointment and heartache that came from my wrong choices. I know you would've wore every broken heart for me, rather than let me suffer one. I know you would've laid down your life for me, if that meant saving me from a lifetime of pain... I also know you had your regrets; I know you would've liked to have given your 6 children, and mum, much more than you did. I know you made your mistakes as well... but with ALL that I am, I KNOW you loved us as best as you knew how - as best as this broken world had allowed you to.
Dad, you called me "my love" once, when you were defending my honour against a guy I was dating at the time, and now I return that love to you, MY LOVE... You, Dad, were my first true love. You, Dad, were the one who placed love inside my heart, who planted that seed, who watered it, who wanted to protect it and my heart so they would grow strong and never be battered by the elements of life.
You loved me... like no other... and it's your love, heart, and spirit, that God could get to me through. I am closer to God now because of your love, Dad. I can see God more clearly, understand His loving, merciful, graceful, giving heart far more because of you...so now, I can boldly, confidently, humbly, and whole-heartedly say, "Thank you for being my dad..." and, "God, thank You for giving him to me..."
See you soon, big guy... I love you... I miss you... I am so very grateful for you...
ALL my love
(I just remembered: I once asked God what became of my dad when he died, and I felt God's heart break when He replied, "Do you really think I would let your dad go to hell?" ...No, I don't... for no greater love had anyone for me - in my life prior to me finally opening my heart to God - than my dad...)