A Father’s Day Parable

Ted and grandson Kyle

   A young father stepped onto the highway of life, and as he began his journey, he turned to the guide who was accompanying him, and asked; “Is this journey going to be long — and will it be hard?”
    “Yes,” the guide replied. “Your journey will be difficult, and you will grow old before you reach the end of it. But I can tell you that the end will be far better than the beginning.”
    The young father was thoroughly happy. He could not believe that anything could top these years. So he played with his children, swam with them in the pool, and played endless games with them. The sun shined upon them, and life was good. And the young father smiled and said to himself, “Nothing will be more lovely than this!”
    Then the night came, and the storm rolled in. The path ahead was dark and foreboding, and the children shook with fear and cold. And the father drew them close, encircled them in his arms, and covered them with his mantle of love. And the children said; “Oh, Daddy, we are not afraid now, for you are here, and no harm can come to us.” 
    And the father said, “This is better than the brightness of sunlight, for I have taught my children courage!”
    When the morning came, they looked at the hill up ahead, knowing that all of them would have to climb it. The children climbed and climbed and climbed and grew so weary. And Dad was weary too, but he continually encouraged them. “A little patience children,” he would say. “Keep at it; the top is not far now.”
    The children climbed and climbed, and when they finally reached the top, they said: “Daddy, we could not have done it without you!”
    And when Dad laid down to sleep that night, he looked up at the stars and said, “This is a better day than last, for my children have learned fortitude in the face of hardship. Yesterday, I gave them courage; today I gave them strength!”
    And the next day foreboding clouds appeared on the horizon — clouds of war and of hate and evil. The children felt the pressure of it all, and they began to stumble. But the father said, “Children, look up! Lift your eyes to the Light of life!”
    And the children looked up and saw above the clouds the eternal glory of the Heavenly Father — Jesus, the Messiah! With His light He guided and brought them beyond the darkness.
    And that night the father said, “This is the best day of all, for I have pointed my children to the grace and love of God in His Son, our Savior!”
    And the days passed on into weeks, months, and years. The father grew older and slowed just a little. But his children were tall and strong and walked with confidence and courage. When the way became hard and the burdens heavy, they were there to help carry the load, and all experienced the victory together. 
    At last they came to a hill, and beyond the hill they could see a brightly lighted highway and wide open gates glistening with jewels. And father said, “I have reached the end of my journey, and I know for certain that the end is far better than the beginning. For my children can walk alone in righteousness, and their children after them.”
    And the children said, “Daddy, you will always walk with us, even when you have passed through those gates!”
    And the day came when they watched their daddy as he walked on alone, and the gates closed behind him. And they said: “We cannot see him but he is with us still. A daddy like ours is more than a memory; he is a living presence!”



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