When people meet my dad, they generally notice his hands, particularly the girth of his fingers. They may also notice the freckles the dot the back of his hands, or the area that is devoid of freckles from the fire, or the heavy thick caluses that he wears like badges of honor.

My eyes see the story that goes with those hands. I see the way that they hold my mother’s hands just perfectly. I see hand’s that, despite their physical strength, are weak unless they are accompanied by the love of his heart. I see the way that they hold each of us kid’s hands as we pray around the dinner table. I see them clutching a hammer, making something for one of the grandkids. I see them grasping a fly rod, the line arcing gracefully overhead. I know that they are always in motion, moving from task to task.

As Father’s Day approaches, I am thankful for the example of fatherly love that God has placed in my life. While physically my hand’s are totally different from my dad (I have the long skinny fingers of my mom’s side), I try hard every day to make sure my children know the presence of my hands so that their memories are filled with the features and stories that my hands tell.