My dad has been on my mind a lot this summer what with Father's Day and his birthday. I'm still thinking about him so I'm going with it. I may have things to come to terms with regarding my dad and this is as good a place as any to work it out.
On my last short trip home, as I rounded the corner taking a left at the Sapp Bros watertower I heard my father's voice coming out of the radio. It's not as unusual as it might seem. He is a voice over artist in my hometown and I had managed to tune in to a hometown station. It was a bank commercial. The interesting thing about my dad's voice over work is the work he does for Back to the Bible which is headquartered in my hometown. My dad does a considerable amount of work for them and it always strikes me as odd because my dad is not a Christian. That's not judgement on my part that is his own admission. His beliefs are complex but that's a very different subject. I don't generally listen to Back to the Bible stuff. Honestly it seems kind of old fashioned to me.(Now that's a judgement) Occasionally, though, if I'm tuned in to the local Christian radio station (You know the station that got saved) (sorry lame joke) Ok, where was I. Oh yeah, if my car is tuned in to one of the local Christian radio stations, sometimes a Back to the Bible show will be on when I turn on the car. And, sometimes, as I'm reaching to change the station my finger will pause midair as I hear my dad's voice. Then I listen a little longer. There is one piece he did for them, a very long monologue in which he played the character of God. In it he recites a message from God about his son Jesus. A lot of it, as you would expect, comes straight from the bible. Three things struck me simultaneously listening to this particular broadcast. One, was the strange unfamiliarity of my dad's voice speaking in such glowing terms about Jesus, salvation, and a whole host of other Christian buzzwords. Two, was the fact that thinking of my dad as a Christian probably should not be such a impossible possibility in my mind. Not that he might be saved even though he professes not to be, but, that he might be saved some day. Some day wayyyyyyy in the future maybe, but the point is, I should not just write him off. And third, it is entirely possible that my dad "non christian" has reached more people for Christ than I have. Now that one kind of blows me away.
One more story because it kind of fits.
When I was in the hospital four years ago with my newborn baby, up in the middle of the night, I had the television on with the volume turned way down to barely audible. Out of the darkness and through my sleepy fog my ears perked up. It was my father's voice. I snapped out of my fog, looked up and turned up the volume. It was indeed my dad, doing a commercial promoting Nebraska golf courses. I was so familiar with my father's voice that even in my new mommy, middle of the night delirium I was able to tune into it. It was a very emotional moment for me, well, you know how emotional new moms can be. I also had a very strong indication, at that point, about how familiar I should become to the voice of my Father in heaven. I should be so familiar with his voice that I can hear it when I least expect it.
So, that's it for this weeks episode of theology with dad, both earthly and heavenly. Tune in next week when I'll probably prove once again how I fail to listen to my own lessons.