Single Dads

2014-02-15_Family in FloridaI have been a single father to 3 amazing kids since my wife Laura died from stomach cancer on December 22, 2011. I work as a scientist in research and development, but that does not define me. I am a Christ-follower, first and foremost, and through my relationship with Jesus I am continuously filled with joy, hope, love and peace.

Being a single parent is not easy. In fact, I believe it is one of the most difficult and important jobs in the world. One of my struggles with being a single parent is guilt. It always seems like there is more that I should be doing and that there is never enough time to get everything done. It is a huge challenge for me to work full-time, own my own home and spend enough time with each of my children. Between cooking, cleaning, laundry, mowing the lawn, homework, taking my son to sporting events, etc. there never seems to be enough time in the day to get complete it all. However, it is during those chaotic moments of feeling overwhelmed that it is important for me to remind myself that “I can only do what I can do”.

In our family, we have made having dinner together every night a priority. It is a time when I can check in with my kids and have conversations about our days, etc. Another part of our daily routine is “reading time”. Every night at 7 pm, we all grab a book and read for at least 20 minutes. For me, this is when I have my quiet time and spend time reading the Bible. Now to be completely honest, I don’t do this every night because sometimes I am doing other jobs, or we are out because of my son’s sporting events. However, this daily time of peace and quiet reading God’s word is always refreshing and encouraging to me. It gives me strength and has always worked to restore my sanity.

I was married to an amazing woman who loved Jesus deeply, and because of her strong faith, Laura was an incredible wife and mother. Since her death, God has used I Thessalonians 5:16-18 to help encourage and heal my heart. (I Thessalonians 5:16-18 “Be joyful always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances. For this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”) I am profoundly grateful for the many blessings in my life. I am convinced that being thankful has healed my heart. Thankfulness has worked to replace my grief with joy.