By Lynn Jones
I tell young husbands that their becoming a father will be one of life’s greatest experiences. It certainly was for me.
My wife Danielle and I had been married ten years, and it had become medically impossible for us ever to have children. That prompted us to make application with an adoption agency to try to adopt a child. We filled out all the forms, went to all the classes, and were approved as prospective parents. We got a nursery ready in our home, and then we waited. Four years went by, and we did not know if we would ever be parents or not.
In the 14th year of our marriage, one evening we were sitting in the den of the church parsonage watching the news when the phone rang, and Danielle answered it. She suddenly started crying and said, “I’m going to have to let you talk to my husband.” Thinking that someone in the church family may have died, I took the phone to find out what had happened. On the other end of the line, the voice of the adoption agency director said, “How would you like to come in the morning and pick up your infant son?” It was an unbelievable message. No one had died. Someone had been born, and we had been waiting for him for many years. What a day!
In a few minutes, we had gone from being a couple who may never have a child to being a couple who were going to pick our child up the next morning. It was an overwhelming experience. Baptists have traditionally been critical of dancing, but for what may have been the first time in the history of that church parsonage, the pastor and his wife did a wild dance of celebration in that house!
It was just as I suspected. Becoming a father was one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences in my life. Our son filled a big hole in our hearts and filled our lives with unbelievable joy.
As unbelievable as it seems, rearing a child is a temporary assignment. Older parents often said to me when our son was young, “Now, you enjoy that boy. He will be grown before you know it.” And they were right! The days flew by. We savored every moment along the way and thanked God for the privilege of being parents.
This Sunday, during our Father’s Day service at Clear Creek Baptist Church, when we invite children to come forward, take a boutonniere, and give it to their fathers, my son, now almost 40, will come with the others, take a boutonniere, pin it on my lapel, give me a hug, and say, “Happy Father’s Day, Dad!” And there is no moment that I will enjoy more than that. Happy Father’s Day to all of you dads!
Lynn Jones is a retired pastor who lives in Oxford. He does supply preaching for churches in his area and often serves as an interim pastor. Jones is also an author, has written two books and writes a weekly newspaper column. He may be contacted at: email@example.com.