This I Believe

Curtis - Marion Center, Pennsylvania
Entered on April 20, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30

It was tough being the man of the house at the age of 13: shoveling snow, chopping wood, and scaring off any thugs that might try and date my older sister. But I survived it, six years of estrogen filled romantic comedies, with my sisters and I was a new man.

The truth about my father is simple; he is a let down. I wanted to be my father when I was little. I wanted to where big boots, shoot guns, and drive a stick shift car; it just seemed much cooler than an automatic. All this changed when he had an affair, with some younger lady that he is married to now, who I really have no desire to ever meet.

Why did he leave, I had so much fun him. Apparently he didn’t appreciate a nice long tractor ride the way I did. As I look back now I can see why, he wasn’t a real man; he didn’t even have the courage to say goodbye. He left in the night after I was asleep, leaving my mom to tell my sisters and me what was happening.

What can I say, my father was spineless, but does every man that gets a divorce or runs away lack a spine? No, there are many brave men that run when faced with trouble, what they truly lack is staying power.

Men make promises and vows that mean nothing to them, for my father and many others “forever” means, “Until I get tired of you or things are getting too hard.” A true man follows through with his promises, even if it means death.

I became a loaner in the purest sense possible, I loaned my friends’ dads. Usually only for a couple hours, but I needed it. I craved it like a like a woman craves chocolate. Those times that I spent with my friends fathers, hunting, working, and talking about God would fill me up with enough “man fuel” to make it through the week.

As I hung out with my friends’ dads, the rage built inside of me— at the world, my father, and mostly God. If God was real and all powerful, then why did He let this happen to me?

As I grew and matured I realized that bad things happen to good people all the time, it isn’t that God is punishing us, or wants us to be unhappy. Rather He is always teaching us, and helping us to mature into kinder, gentler, and wiser children. Through my experiences with my father I have learned what not to do, and through my experiences with Christ I know exactly what to do.

I believe that I will someday fall in love with a beautiful woman and marry her. When I say forever I will mean it, and with Christ’s sacrifice on the cross of what real men do as a constant reminder in my life, I will fulfill my vow.