Monday, July 16, 2007


My dad died December 22, 2006. I got the opportunity to spend three days with him prior to his death. He was in a "sleeping coma." I simply sat by his bed read the bible to him and shared three list I made: Things I learned from my dad; Things I Remember; Things I wish.

As a tribute to him, I want to share these lists. He was a wonderful man. He was a self-employed roofing contractor. He worked hard. This may give you a glimpse of him, and therefore of me. I will miss my dad, but I will always have my dad. I will always partially be my dad.

  • Laughter-you always laughed easily and often. It was an infectious laugh. I would hear you laugh watching TV after I had gone to bed. I would begin to giggle because I knew if you were laughing that hard it was funny.
  • Integrity-you did everything with integrity. You ran your business this way. You dealt with people at church in that way.
  • Belief in others-you never seemed to think yourself better than others.
  • Authenticity-you were who you were. You had anger, but dealt with it. Your life was your witness. People knew you were different.
  • Gift of presence-you showed up at my stuff.
  • Time-you took me on the job with you. I got my own nail apron and hammer. I didn’t need it, but you let me wear it just checking leaks, or doing bids. I always got to go on the roof too.
  • Letting God work-you yielded to God your anger, smoking.
  • Work ethic-you modeled it and expected it. The tar pump broke down early in the day on a two story apartment. I was ready to call it a day. You simply broke out the rope and pulley wheel. I hoisted LOTS of tar buckets that day. I was exhausted!
  • Responsibility-say what you mean, mean what you say. I watched this in you, I have tried to make it part of me.
  • Gentle encouragement-when I got my call to ministry you never made me feel bad. I know you had a dream for “Stevenson & Son,” but you released that so I could follow God. You did say, “take some business classes.” I didn’t do this, and I should have. It would have been an immense help in ministry.
  • Taking things in stride-Life is life…things happen…do the best with what you have.
  • Taking care of family-you taught me how to be a good dad.
  • Treat people fairly-all ages, colors, backgrounds.
  • Let all of us kids follow our dreams
  • Handle challenges with dignity-burn on hand, getting glasses, prostate cancer. I never heard you complain or bemoan your situation. You might have, I just never heard it.
  • Self-sufficiency-you taught all of us to make our way and take care of our selves. That is our inheritance
  • Independent spirit-self employed
  • Unconditional acceptance-you told me one time I did not have to do anything to make you proud of me. Freeing statement.
  • Crossword puzzles-I watched you do these for years. In the last few I have caught the bug. I am not, nor ever will be, at your skill level. I told Scott, the time will come when it grabs him. It is part of the “Stevenson rite of passage.”

There was much more, but this is all I will share. If you still have your dad, appreciate him. If your dad is no longer living, be thankful for him.

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