Today, April 1, 2016, I received a call from my mom that my dad had passed away. He had battled declining health for several months and, this week, was hospitalized for several things, mostly old age. I was able to spend several days with him before I needed to leave to get back home. Before I left him, though, I was able to tell him that he was a good man. He overcame much in his life to leave a legacy that will live on in his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Above all, he was a child of God, and there is no doubt he is meeting his Heavenly Father right now.
I wrote the following post two years ago, and I republish it now in memory of him.
I love you, dad.
Tomorrow is my dad’s birthday. Archie Moore will become an 82 year-old husband, father, and grandfather. He’ll celebrate the way he always does…with family close by and, perhaps, a steak or rack of ribs in front of him.
God has blessed me with a father who is and has always been a present part of my life. Through all of our times together, he has been an anchor, not only for me, but for the entire extended family. That is the evidence of grace in all our lives. There are too few words in my vocabulary to express the tremendous effect he has had on my life, but suffice it to say that he has been a model of character and commitment and love.
Above all, he has been a father. It has been said by some that our perception of our heavenly Father can sometimes be, for good or bad, based on our experience with our earthly father. My dad has modeled that, for just as my heavenly Father is One of mercy, discipline, justice, and love, so too has my dad demonstrated those same traits.
Through all of that, he taught me…
…how to hunt and fish, and thus, to appreciate the outdoors.
…how to love baseball, and how to win and lose with grace.
…how to tie a tie, and when to wear one.
…how to shake a hand, and look people in the eye.
…how to carry a pocketknife, and to always know where it is.
…how to birth a calf, with wonder and awe at God’s created ones.
…how to drive, and have responsibility.
…how to haul hay and plant a garden, with an appreciation for hard work.
And the list goes on. As he taught me, he modeled…
…the commitment of being a husband.
…the joy and pain of being a father.
…how to work hard and put in an honest day’s work.
…the importance of being active in church.
…how to be a follower of Christ.
Through it all, my dad was always there. Always at home. Always at my games. And, now, always a phone call away. He encouraged, supported, disciplined, loved, punished, and listened. He not only said it, but he lived it.
Through all of the good times and bad, he was a dad and a father.
I hope that my sons experience the same.