By Benescke Janse van Rensburg
From an early age, Robert excelled on the sports field. It was therefore no surprise when he was selected for a professional football team after he left school. Although his life seemed perfect, him having to regularly pose for photos or give out autographs to fans, his deepest desire was to hear his dad say that he loves and accepts him.
Robert’s father’s alcohol addiction was the cause of a broken relationship between them. He wished that his father would, like many other players’ fathers do, also came to his football games and be there, to encourage and support him, but it never happened.
After his career as a football player, Robert felt called to go into full-time ministry. He joined the seminary, completed his training and with his beautiful wife, started a successful ministry. But still his dad was absent from his life.
After receiving the news of his father’s heart attack, Robert rushed to the hospital. When he entered the emergency room, his father was clearly very weak and somewhat disorientated. For a moment he thought Robert was the doctor. With a weak hand, he touched Robert’s arm and spoke to him in a whispering voice: “Hey doctor, have I told you about my son, Robert? I am so proud of him. He was not only a brilliant footballer, but he is a pastor of a large congregation. Doctor, I wish you could meet my son. I’m sure you will like him very much.”
For the first time in 35 years, Robert heard the words he longed to hear with his whole being. Only later he discovered that his father attended every football game he ever played, but because of his reputation as being a drunk and him not wanting to embarrass Robert always stood at a distance.
When was the last time you told your loved ones that you love and appreciate them? Even though your parents might have disappointed you by not telling you that they love and appreciate you, Your Heavenly Father will never do that! Listen to the words in 1 John 4:7: “Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God.”
Do not wait 35 years before you tell your loved ones that you care about them. Do it today. Tomorrow may be too late! God bless.
Father God, thank you for creating and loving me the way I am. Help me to show my loved ones that I care for them. This I pray in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.