I deal in hope : Carolyn R Scheidies

Blog Dads are critical ingredient to growing up

1954 Dad Bill, Mom Ada, Carolyn, Paul, Karin

Dads play an integral part in raising their children. Their role is as important as the roles mothers play. Unless a father is abusive in some way, it is wise to involve dad in the life of his children–even if divorce has separated the family.

I know how important my dad was in my life. He held me securely on his lap and read to me by the hour. He read Alice and Wonderland over and over–the full version–until as he confessed years later, he came to heartily dislike the book. The book and others fired my imagination and started that desire to write my own stories.

Dad gave me a glimpse of a harsher world with stories about his years as a medic in World War II. Though he was careful about the stories he told, I realized the sacrifice the soldiers made, even of their lives, to protect their homeland and loved ones. He helped me see that fighting for what is right is right and just.

Without my father’s wisdom, I don’t know what I would have done when, as a young teen, I contracted Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis. My father’s medical knowledge stood me in good stead as we navigated the treatments at the time when medical knowledge was in its infancy about this disease. He managed to steer clear of treatments that destroyed the bones of other young patients. Dad’s knowledge and firmness with doctors gave me a chance to once more walk again.

As a pastor, my dad dealt with all sorts of situations, people and races. He (and my mother) taught me God loved all those He created and that everyone deserved respect. He showed me not only by words but also by example. He firmly believed God’s love extended to anyone. Sometimes his actions toward those deemed “unacceptable” got him in hot water with his congregations. He reached out anyway.

Dad believed in a gospel of grace and joy. Our family didn’t sit around with long faces. The Bible, Dad showed us, contains a whole lot about being joyful. Why? Because Jesus loves us and has a positive plan and purpose for those who follow Him. Dad who wasn’t a great singer nevertheless led his congregations in singing joyful choruses with my very musical mother at the piano or accordion.

Dad was a solid rock in my world, especially after my mother died of a massive stroke during my senior year of college when I was still wheelchair bound. Years later, after I’d married and Keith and I had two young children, we lost Dad. The grief overwhelmed and lasted for months.

Not everyone has the sort of father I had. I know of friends who lost their dads early. Many found substitutes in an uncle or a man from their church who took an interest and were later credited with helping them become men of honor, faith, and integrity.

Whether it is a holiday to celebrate fathers or not, we need to let our fathers, or those who acted in that role, know how much we love and appreciate them.

With love. Happy Father’s Day!

By Carolyn R scheidies
Kearney Hub Published 2019 June 10

For more on my life read The Day Secretariat Won the Triple Crown


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