"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."

Friday, January 1, 2010

Role Models

We throw around the title of "role model" much too loosely. We crown people as a role model because they hold a position. We place athletes on a pedestal as role models. We simply do not look for the positive models in our life --- those people who make a significant impact on us personally. My role model is a strong man who has worked hard his entire life. He has compassion, sympathy, and empathy for others. Yet, he can also be stern when the need arises. He has a great sense of humor, a quick wit, and a twinkle in his eye when he witnesses something that amazes him. This man of God is my Daddy, Haskell Gillespie. Today is his 86th birthday! His memory has faded a bit, but his love for life and family remains as clear as a sunny day. He lost his sweetheart and wife of more than 60 years back in April 2008 when my Mom went home to be with the Lord. He was heart broken and still misses her so much, but his character has remained true through all of his circumstances. I have written much about never allowing your circumstances to dictate your character. It's been somewhat of a theme in my writing that we should allow our character to show through and glorify God in the midst of our circumstances. My Dad has lived this out in his life. I can remember many times when things didn’t look good and my Dad would pray that God be glorified NO MATTER WHAT. To this day he still stands firm on that belief. A little over a year ago I was asked to go home to Pontotoc, Mississippi and speak at West Heights Baptist Church, where I attended when I was growing up. My Dad is a member of that congregation and my Mom is buried in the church cemetery. Ashley, my youngest daughter, and I traveled to Mississippi and got set up to speak. In walked my Dad -- dressed up and ready to worship. He sat close to the front so he could hear me well. He prayed for me before I spoke and then celebrated God’s grace on TEAM 413 as I told “miracle moment” stories that have happened during our travels. He was a proud Dad because we have followed God’s call to see this ministry through. Daddy is a wonderful man and father. He misses my Mom terribly. But in ALL things he gives God glory. He thanks God for the years that he had with my Mom and looks forward to the time when he will be reunited with her in Heaven. He is truly the Godliest man I know and is the example of a role model. I am proud to call him Dad, Daddy, Grandpa, and Gramps. He is the best and I praise God for him each day.
Happy Birthday, Daddy! Under HIS Grace… Chris

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