Gary Chapman wrote a book about the five love languages that I have read more than once. The premise is everyone shows and receives love in different ways and to truly feel and share love with others we must recognize their love language.
May Dad’s love language is ‘acts of service’. Those who know my dad may argue that it is ‘words of affirmation’ emphasis on the words part because we all know how much he loves to talk. But those that know him best will agree with my assessment because his true friends have been on the receiving end of his service, I am certain.
As is was growing up, and not sharing the same love language or even understanding the concept, I was uncertain how to share love with my father. He was always doing things for others and seldom home between crazy work ours and his projects. It wasn’t until adulthood that I came to understand that the doing was his service and therefore his loving others as Christ loved us.
So, many years ago, as I was overcome by this realization, I wrote a poem for my father and will share it today on his birthday:
The words “I Love You” don’t come easy for some
At least not as easy as other ones
As for my Dad, this fact is true
Be he will never hide his love for you
The key is to really know the one that you love
Then their love is as evident as rain from above
Taking out the trash, changing oil, coolers of gatorade, bags of dirt
“I’m not fussing, I’m just telling,” Please be careful, don’t get hurt”
These are a few of the many ways
My Daddy says “I Love You” everyday
So to show you, Daddy, in a way for only you…
You be careful, too!
Today, Dad’s life is very different. But he still displays his love for his family in service. It looks more like doing laundry, sharing ideas of things and ways to improve our lives and giving advice based on lessons learned throughout his life. Most importantly, for my family, as well as my sisters crew that are hours away, his daily lifting us in prayer is his act of service and love. I love you and Happy Birthday, Daddy!