Tomorrow is Father’s Day! It is a joy for me to come to my first Father’s Day after starting this website. That means I have a really good reason for writing about my husband, not that I need one. There is much that I could say about him and probably would if the world could endure it. He is an exemplary husband and father. In him I see the love of Christ poured out daily.
In setting out to write this post I remembered that there was a time when I got to share a testimony about my husband at our church. It was back on Father’s Day 2011. A secret email had gone out about 2 ½ months earlier to the women of the church informing us that there would be a special service held that Father’s Day. The service was titled “How God Uses Special Men to Impact our Lives.” The email asked the women if there were any who would like to give a testimony during the service. The invitation was also extended to children who might want to talk about their dads. I jumped at the chance and so did our daughter. We were both happy to stand up and praise God for all he does through the godly man that heads our home.
There was only one problem. I wasn’t currently attending church because of my health situation. That meant I couldn’t be there to give my testimony. I was disappointed. I really didn’t want to miss this chance to honor my husband and to publicly praise and thank God for everything Butch does. Thankfully it was suggested that I make a video of my testimony. That sounded good to me. I went about writing and later recording it. The video was put up on a big screen during the service. My husband didn’t know this was coming and was completely surprised to “see” me in church. He was also deeply moved. Though I could not be there, I was filled with joy all the same. I prayed that God would be glorified through all the testimonies that were given. There are a lot of great men out there. Personally, I was delighted to share about my husband who takes his role as a Christian father and husband to heart and who loves and provides for his family unselfishly even through difficult times. He still does so today.
Though I could start from scratch and easily write another testimony about Butch, I have decided to post my testimony from that Father’s Day below. It was a joy to share then and it is a joy to share now. I pray that doing so glorifies God and blesses your heart to see the good that can come to a family through a man who seeks to live as God has called him to live. Though, praise God, my health situation has improved some since this was written, the sacrifice and service that my husband gives are all still happening today. His unselfishness and love have not wavered.
Father’s Day June 19, 2011
It is a joy and an honor to be sharing with you today. This Father’s Day, I would like to share my testimony with you about how the Lord has worked in the life of my family through my husband Butch, who by the way, did not know I was planning on sharing this.
Butch and I have been happily married for 22 years and blessed with two wonderful children. Our family has been attending here since 2003. You may have not seen me, however, because I am house bound and have not been able to come to church for about three years. Therefore, I am very grateful that I am able to share with you in this way.
Our family is in the midst of a very difficult time. This is due to my illness which has spanned over 15 years. We have seen many doctors who have been unable to help, but we continue working towards a solution. During these 15 years, I have become more and more unable to participate in everyday activities due to pain. My feet hurt when I stand or walk, my back hurts when I sit, and my back and sides hurt when I lie on them. And now, since I have had to lie down on my stomach so much over the past 3 years, my ribs hurt leaving me with no position without pain.
My lack of mobility and my limitations have affected many things in our family’s life. I share all this with you to help you to better understand the needs that my husband has so unselfishly responded to. I thank God that He has given me to a man who has obediently responded to his call to be a Christian father and husband.
As I speak about Butch, it is important to me that you do not get the impression that I think that he is perfect. He’s not. He has the same challenges and struggles in his life that are common to all men. But, I do want to highlight the goodness that is in him. And I know that he would agree that anything good in him is due to God. So, I trust that sharing with you will ultimately serve to glorify God for God is the source and sustainer of all that my husband does well.
Butch has given faithful service to our family throughout all of our challenging hardship. There has been a significant shift in responsibilities in our home. Besides keeping up with the things that he has always done around the house, Butch has also had to take over a number of things that use to be my department. From food shopping to laundry to doctor visits – he does it all and without complaining. And he does it all while running his own business. Please pray for him.
Our children help him out in many ways, and I am so thankful for that as well. I in no way want to diminish their service, but right now – my focus is on him. It is Father’s Day after all.
Butch has continued unwavering in his devotion to us. I know that not all men in similar situations respond as he has. It is understandably very hard on them. Unfortunately, denial, frustration, and even anger can become real problems. I believe that it is by God’s grace that my husband loves and serves as he does. He lays down his needs – his free time – his interests – everything – and puts us first. He is interested in our emotional and spiritual well being. He continues to be involved in nurturing our children’s character. He works to help them grow into responsible adults and guides them in the ways of the Lord.
As Butch serves us, he also leads us. He truly is the “head of the house”. This may seem like an old-fashioned term to some, but I like to refer to it as God-fashioned. God’s word so wonderfully provides for fathers and husbands the instruction and help that they need to see His will and role for them. I know that this role pertaining to leadership that God has given to men is not always well received or understood, but it is my hope that as you see the goodness and fruit of it, God’s way would be glorified and seen a little clearer.
Butch takes on the responsibility of leading us everyday. His leadership touches many areas of our lives from big decisions to little ones, but he does not lead for his own pleasure or advancement. He leads for our good. He talks with me and considers my input and doesn’t steamroll over any of us.
His headship became more firmly established several years ago when we both came to better understand God’s design for marriage and the beautiful example of Christ and His church – an example of grace, love, sacrifice, authority, submission, and respect – that serves to bring glory to God. As we embraced God’s roles for us, a wonderful transformation took place. We found a deeper harmony and closeness; and, at the time, we did not know it, but it was giving us a solid framework that would help us to endure the trials that we are now facing.
In this time of sickness, Butch’s leadership makes all the difference in the world. It helps things to run smoothly in our home and in our relationships. It helps immensely when facing difficult and confusing health decisions. Personally, I am deeply grateful for it in times of emotional grief. Having been sick and in pain for so long, my perseverance is tested. It gets harder when certain factors are in play. In these trying times I sometimes loose my focus. Normally, I know God is sovereign and good and I have my hope in Him. But sometimes, I loose a firm sight on these truths. I believe that I would eventually rebound, but I don’t have to stay there long because of the openness between us and because Butch knows I’m not going to bite his head off if he comes to me to help me. He knows I’m going to take his council and submit to his guidance. He beseeches the Lord for me and encourages me in the Lord. Listening to and submitting to God’s word and my husband at these times helps me to persevere.
Butch has tirelessly held the goodness of God before me. It is a great blessing to have him there to hold my hand and lead me back to right thinking. Our whole family benefits when he helps me like this because my attitude and behavior affects everyone around me.
His leadership has helped create stability and peace in our home which I treasure. It is such a delight to see God’s mercy and grace manifested so clearly as Butch honors and obeys God’s word. I am so thankful that he has found a loving balance of service and leadership that has so helped and blessed our family. Our family is not without problems – again not perfect; but by living God’s way, I know everything is much better than it would have been.
God’s Design for the Family
It has long been our prayer that God would be glorified in our lives. We both fully know that it is due to God’s gracious will that we have what we have. His design and order for the family works. We thank God that He worked to help us to better understand His will. His way has kept our family from being torn apart by trial and from suffering the consequences of persistent selfishness.
I am so thankful that God has blessed all Christian families with the instructions they need to live lives that are pleasing to Him. His way creates families and marriages that are unlike the world’s – ones that contradict human wisdom and culture and demonstrate God’s glorious nature and provision for His church in Christ. His design works in good times and in very bad times.
It is my hope today to be an encouragement for pursuing God’s way and obeying His will more fully for love, for sanctification, and for His glory. I know there is peace and provision in it. And I believe that fathers who pursue both godly love and leadership in their homes will find themselves cherished by their wives and children as precious gifts from God. I thank God for His grace and mercy and for my wonderful husband, and I thank Butch for being the father and husband that he is. I wish him and all dads a wonderful Father’s Day.