JULY 2010 – It was 1967, and my study was located in a storage room directly behind our home. It was a very small room to begin with, and once I put my books and supplies and machines in it, I could hardly turn around.
One day I was having one of those days when everything seemed to go wrong. My desk was covered with matters that needed my attention, correspondence was lagging, and there were other matters pressing.
I was sitting in my study, half-mad at myself and half-mad at my lack of space. Then, without knocking, in came my son Timmy, who proceeded to sit down behind me. I started to turn and tell him there wasn’t room for him, but I waited, for I knew that if I spoke at that moment I would be harsh with him. So I went about my work, listening as he began taking paper from the wastebasket and books from the shelf.
“Daddy,” he said, “do you have a pen?” I reached into my pocket and gave him my pen. I then tried to continue my work. But it seemed that every time I turned around I bumped into him. So, my temperature rising, I turned to scold him and send him back into the house. Upon turning, I was stopped cold by what I saw!
Timmy had laid out some old papers from the trash can, some of my books, and with pen in hand, he was marking on a sheet of paper. He had made himself a makeshift desk that was in something of a mess.
Now most of the time when Timmy wants to know what I’m doing out in the study, I tell him, “I’m studying.” I looked at him there; he paused for a moment and looked up, and after thinking a few seconds, he began to write again.
“What are you doing, Son?” I asked.
He looked me in the eye as only a son can do and gave me his answer with a little grin on his face: “I’m studying, Daddy.”
I didn’t say anything else to him. I turned back around and pretended to go back to work. But I didn’t do much work for the next few minutes. I just sat there thinking how proud I was of my son. It made me feel just as big as a man can get knowing that my son wanted to be like me – to do what I do.
But then a greater truth came to me. My Creator was telling me that this was really what He wants from me. He wants me to be like Him. How good He must feel when we act like Him, do what He does, and live like we are His children. “Wouldn’t it be a good world,” I thought to myself, “if we wanted to be like Him as much as Timmy wants to be like his father?”
Fast-forward to July 2010 …
Today, as AFA leadership moves from my shoulders to Tim’s, I’m prouder of my son than ever before. I am confident in his heart, his desire, and his abilities to lead AFA where God would have it go. Godspeed, Son.
Editor’s Note: From the late 1970s through 2010, Don Wildmon, founder and president emeritus of American Family Association, wrote hundreds of monthly columns for AFA Journal. Thirty-one of his best columns are now available in a recently published collection titled Our Call to Faithfulness: The Voice and Legacy of Don Wildmon. These columns represent his timeless wisdom and insight and were recently being published weekly on The Stand in celebration of AFA’s 40 years of ministry. This column concludes the weekly publications. However, the book is still available.
Click here or call 877-927-4917 to order your own copy of Our Call to Faithfulness: The Voice and Legacy of Don Wildmon.