Dad’s Best Advice

“Catch us the foxes –

The little foxes that spoil the vines

For our vines have tender grapes.” Song of Solomon 2:15

Looking back on my growing up years, and latter as an adult, my memories of my father are filled with love for his family. I remember him playing stoop tag with us, in the back yard, taking us for long Sunday drives in the country, and playing board games.

Dad was an honest man, who never took sick days. He taught his kids to play fair and treat others with kindness. He instructed us if we didn’t have enough of something to share with the ones we were with, then we should forgo it ourselves.

When I was in the sixth grade, he bought my first typewriter as a Christmas present. He thought my art was great. It still isn’t. He saw talent where it wasn’t and made me feel special.

My parents’ love story began… Once upon a time during World War Two, my mother and dad met on a snowy Valentine’s Day, in Cincinnati, and married the very next day. They wanted to go into restaurant business and didn’t think it would look right if they weren’t married.

My mother told me she couldn’t have loved my father, as she hadn’t known him. Later, however, she had grown to love my dad. He was her handsome marine with the whitest teeth and dark, curly hair. By the way, I inherited the curly hair. So they were wed, and off he went. Dad had to go back on duty the next day.

When we were in grade school, we would listen to a record he had recorded while he was in New York. We thought it was hilarious, because he stuttered so much. I guess he didn’t know what to say to the young wife he barely knew. They married in their teens, and grew up together, having us four children. Both parents demonstrated their commitment and love for each other. Before my dad moved to Heaven in 2010, they celebrated their sixty- fourth anniversary.

In my dads’ eyes, my mother was on a pedestal. He never said an unkind word to or about her. Even when I expressed aggravation with her, in my teen years, he would declare, “ She’s your mother. The end. Nothing else to discuss. Respect was expected.

My father was the most humble man I ever knew. He took the Bible literally, and entered his bedroom closet to pray. The scripture he gave me that stands out most in my mind is from Song of Solomon “…the little foxes that spoil the vine.” How true that has been, in my life. Financial crisis, sickness, all the hard junk, even death, we are forced to deal with, while It is the little everyday things that can mount up, and eat away at our relationships with our loved ones and God.

So, I leave you with my father, and heavenly Fathers’ words, its “…the little foxes…”

Faila Rice

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