I was on the road a lot in November and December, as my eldest moved closer to graduation. One of the most notable events was his senior presentation. He was one in a group of five engineering students who worked together to design and present their project to a group of professional engineers. They stood in the front of the room, ill-at-ease in their suits and ties, waiting for their professor to give the nod to begin. Yet, they moved gradually through the presentation and gained confidence along the way. I watched proudly, as my son shared his portion, thinking — this is just the beginning; he’s a man now; oh, how proud his dad would be.
A short week later, I was watching him walk across the stage to receive the degree for which he worked so hard. My sister and brother-in-law, as well as my son’s girlfriend, joined me and my youngest for the event. His dear uncles wanted to fly from California as well, but with the time so short, I urged them to come another time instead.
I sat there, marveling at how quickly the time had flown. I blinked, and he was grown. Here he was, earning the degree for which his father had encouraged him to study: “Son, get a useful degree first,” he had counseled, “then you can do whatever the Lord’s leads as you build on that foundation.” I was the one who doubted if my son would enjoy engineering…after all, he seemed more of the writer-type, like his mother. But as he moved through the years of study, encouraged by his dad, I watched the natural gifting grow. Raouf was right — he had the stuff to make a great engineer. Raouf always was right. I’m just sorry he wasn’t here to see his son’s grand finish.
In my heart I knew this was just the first of many life events that would be missed by their father. An ache, a sigh, but also a prayer of thanksgiving — Give thanks in ALL things. I do. For it is in the thanksgiving that I’m able to dry the tears and smile, so proud of all my son has gained from his earthly father while giving glory to his Heavenly Father. God is STILL so good, all the time.
Grace and Peace