Friday, June 19, 2009

Dad

Although its been thirty one years since I've celebrated Father's Day with my Dad,
he lives on in my heart and mind as if it were yesterday.

He was a man who did not know a stranger and befriended many people over the years. Dad was a soul winner and never failed to share the Lord's goodness to those he met. The consummate host, I can safely say that hundreds enjoyed meals around my parents' table! He loved his Lord, his wife, his kids, and his grand kids.

He was simply Bud Thompson,
born December 20, 1902!

number six of fourteen sibs

left home at age fourteen--didn't see his last sister until she was six

by seventeen he was a sheep herder for my grandfather
packing for a summer in the hills with the sheep

catching fish in those mountain streams in eastern Washington

by age nineteen he was in the army
boys will be boys, no matter the generation they are from

still working on the ranch in 1927--check out those boots!

In 1931, by now a manager at Safeway, he married the sheep rancher's daughter, my mother,
who was the love of his life until the day he died.

By 1932, I was born and he immediately wrote to his Mother about this first baby of his...
"Dear Mama and Folks, Well everything is over and we have a dandy girl looks just like Grace only has big blue eyes instead of brown. Grace is feeling fine and happy as can be. She sure is glad its over. I have a dandy family now. I told Grace as we were going in, that I'd just as soon have a girl. Her name is Joan Claire--pretty name, I think don't you? She weighs 9 lb & 6 1/2 oz--just a small baby. Gee, I sure feel funny. Papa Bud?? I could only look thru the window at her. Grace will come home in about 10 days. I sure will be glad. Gee, I love that girl, both of them.............. Gee, Mama, we sure have a nice baby. I sure wish you were here. Grace is getting a lot of attention from everyone as she has so many friends She sure is a dandy....
Well, Bye Bye
from Joan & Grace & Papa Bud


At the time I was born, my Dad was not a believer, even though he had the way of salvation explained to him over and over, he just didn't "get it". In a book that my mother wrote of her life, was one special letter she wrote to her grandchildren. It recorded a day in my Dad's life she never forgot and she wanted the grandchildren to know the story.

She wrote:
"This is one thing I should tell. It was the one event that made the greatest change in our lives. Bernie was 18 months old about. It was Armistice night, November 11, 1935. Mr. Charles E. Fuller came to Baker, Oregon for one night. Grandpa went with me, because I wanted him to go. That night Mr. Fuller talked about the Ark, and God shut the door--Grandpa said he knew that he was not inside the Ark. He accepted the Lord that night, asked forgiveness of his sins and Joan and Bernie had a new father, a new man in Christ. What a difference it made in his life...and ours. He had only one desire for each of you, that you would be saved. I do pray for each one of you every day. I do want you to please the Lord, and live for the Lord, if you belong to Him--Always remember what a real man of God your grandfather was. I always wish he could have been with us longer, because of his influence on our lives, but he was here long enough to leave his mark if we think about it. My blessings on you, and remember, "Only one life, twill soon be passed, only what's done for Christ will last. Your grandmother"

mid life was here before we knew it
the unruly curls of his youth settled into a nice wave


The years passed so quickly. Two more babies would be born to this family, Dad opened his own grocery store in Beaverton, Oregon and eventually became a broker for a large gourmet company, from which he retired.

a vital, busy man until the end

and finally the last picture of him, taken that summer at Manzanita Beach
His love for children never ended. I am privileged to have called him 'Dad,' thankful my children called him 'grandpa', and grateful always, that one night, when I was nine years old, I sat on his lap and he gently and firmly led me to the Lord.

I had a good father, not polished as some are, but a diamond in the rough, a vessel through which the love of Christ shone for many years, and a man, who one morning, after Bible reading with my Mother, without warning, simply left us, at age 75, to enter into the arms of the One he adored, his beautiful Saviour!

I rejoice in the father I was given, not perfect, but he loved us..and the older I get, the more I rejoice and am thankful for all that this father I called mine, provided in my life.

I miss my Dad, even after all of these years. I know I shall see him again--what a precious thought!

And with this very long post, I bid you farewell until fall--please don't take me off your lists--just let me drop to the bottom. Lord willing, I shall return with renewed time and energy in September.

14 comments:

kaycar said...

and now dear J , it is my turn for tears. That post is just beautiful.... what a great legacy. Oh that we will leave the same. The letter to his parents upon your birth is just priceless!!
Thanks for sharing!!
carla

sister sheri said...

Dear Joan, thank you for writing such a wonderful post. I love the letters that you included. And what memories you have!

I'll jump over to follow your other blog for the summer.

And I truly pray that this summer will bring you sweet refreshment and a renewed passion.

With love and blessings!
sister sheri

Anonymous said...

BEFORE MY EYES DRY.....I'll respond to your most recent post about your Dad.

WOW!

Was his name "just" Bud? That was his given name?

Great pictures, and I loved your sharing the letters. You have so much family history stored there in your archives. The letter written when you were born is absolutely priceless, and even tho' I didn't know him at that young age, I could just hear him say "dandy" over & over.....he was overwhelmed, wasn't he? What a treasure...

AND THEN...what broke me up....(whew!) was...being reminded of Bud's life, & then scrolling on down to that first picture of baby Cole...the great grandson, so NEW, so perfect, so precious, Bud's latest contribution to the world....The juxtaposition....AMAZING.....

THANX FOR SHARING IT TODAY
Els

a portland granny said...

Bud was his given name. His father wanted one boy who wouldn't have a nick name....go figure!

Ruth said...

Great post. Sounds like your dad was an awesome man. As I stand at the threshhold of loosing my dad I thank you for sharing your sweet memories.

Sassy Granny ... said...

Oh my ... what a beautiful, and beautifully written remembrance!

I am so grateful for men like your Dad. They are God's men of the first order, and such men's men as well. They represent all that is good and rich in mankind, flaws and all!

I noticed your Daddy was born in 1902. Same as mine. I also noticed he loved fishing. So did mine. Who knows ... they may even have crossed paths along the way.

Hugs,
Kathleen

P.S. I can see how you might be undone having visited the lovely places of your childhood. It does the same to me. Double hug!!

The Amazing Trips said...

Joan Claire, I do believe this is a BEAUTIFUL post for your dad. Thank you for sharing your memories of him with us.

Kassaundra said...

I learned a lot from this post I never even knew about my own great grandpa. Thank you Aunt Joan!

The Farm House Kids said...

Joan Claire. That is beautiful. Your post brought tears to my eyes, especially the part about your Dad when you said that "he was here long enough ... to leave his mark." That is what I hope to do.

I'll be talking to you long before Fall rolls around. Take care my dear friend.

Tanya

Joanne@ Blessed... said...

Joan,

You made me cry today. I am sitting her with my husband in his office (he is working, I am not ;O) and I kept reading him bits and pieces of this heart filled post. It makes me love the Lord even more, knowing I will one day meet Bud myself. What an honor.

I came by to add your blog to my blessed blogs of the month but see you are taking a break this summer. Good for you! That precious bundle below will be a great way to pass a bit of the time I'm sure! I will add you when you begin posting again. You are one of my favorites Joan. Your heart is a magnet for me. Bringing me closer to Jesus each time I stop by.

...please keep our family in your prayers if you don't mind. We are taking a trip to Texas next week to spy out the land. We will need the Lord to speak in big ways if we are going to make the move from California to Texas.

Blessings friend!

rose said...

what beautiful memeories you have here,just love old photo`s and how lucky to have so many presvered in excellant condition,you are truly blessed

Pam said...

What a wonderful post....thank you.
I was so happy to hear from you; although I was sorry to learn that you have had so much pain with your back. I am hoping that you are feeling better. You will be in my thoughts and in my prayers- I will be looking forward to the fall when you will be posting again!
Blessings,
Pam

Laura Evangeline said...

Beautiful!

Kath said...

thank you so much for your lovely comments on my blog and boy did I enjoy your story about your Dad...so moving and touching and your love for him shone through in every word....I too lost my Dad such a long time ago...43 years ago but I still think of him every day...he was my best friend...big hugs kath xxxx