God took the strength of a mountain,
the majesty of a tree,
the warmth of a summer sun,
the calm of a quiet sea,
the generous soul of nature,
the comforting arm of night,
the wisdom of the ages,
the power of the eagle’s flight,
the joy of a morning in spring,
the faith of a mustard seed,
the patience of eternity,
the depth of a family need.
Then God combined these qualities, and then there was nothing more to add. He knew his masterpiece was complete. And so, he called it – DAD.
Good morning to my Divinity family! What a beautiful day the Lord has made. We will rejoice in this most special Father’s Day and be glad.
To the fathers and grandfathers, step-fathers, brothers, uncles, and friends. To those that are a father to God’s creatures andthose who care for the beauty of this Earth. For those longing to be fathers and those with a father-like spirit. For the fathers who have lost a child and the children who have lost a father. For all those celebrating with their father beside them today and those who celebrate their father in their hearts… this day is for you.
We are thinking of you on Father’s Day, and offering a prayer.
That God will keep you always, in the shelter of his care.
May He guide you in your daily work, bless everything you do.
And grant you all those special joys that mean the most to you.
I am honored to share this day with all of you. WE are the children of God, our Heavenly Father. We are strong and courageous, not afraid or discouraged… for the Lord our God is with each of us. Wherever we go. We are HIS.
I am the daughter of a Heavenly King who is not moved by the world, for MY God is with me and goes before me. I do not fear because I am HIS.
I am the baby bear to my Papa Bear. My hero. My teacher. My storyteller. My best friend. My dad. James Emery Howe… you are the legend and I am your legacy.
This is my first father’s day with my dad in Heaven. Like an eagle, he is soaring the heavenly skies above. His wings are catching thermals and as he glides through the Heavens, his adventurous spirit lives on in me. I am not alone, for my father is with me. His love still travels on after he is gone. It is a treasure soaring in my heart.
I could think of no better way to honor my dad’s beautiful life and the tremendous father he was, than to share some words of love and hope with all of you today.
“Those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)
For as long as I can remember, my dad always had a love for eagles. From eagle sculptures to eagle key chains… to t-shirts, sweatshirts, pins, and hats... from trinket boxes and bookmarks... to coins and bible covers... if it had an eagle on it, most likely... my dad owned it.
In 2007 my dad gave the Mother’s Day sermon here at Divinity in honor of his late mother, Ruth Howe. His sermon entitled “The Wind Beneath My Wings” even referened the famous song in which the lyrics so eloquently state “I can fly higher than an eagle, for you are the wind beneath my wings.” What a perfect reference he shared for the love of his mother and a symbolic tribute today for the love MY father shared with OUR family.
My dad’s passion for eagles and saoring spanned the course of his lifetime. Isaiah 40:31 served as a theme song to his life.
But what WAS IT about this majectic bird that my dad REALLY loved so dearly?
Maybe it was his admitation for their ability to soar. Eagles will soar on the currents of wind and can stay aloft without the need of flapping for a very long time. Adult eagles can fly up to 10, 000 feet in the air and can achieve speeds of 30 miles per hour. Bald eagles can dive at up to 100 miles per hour. They travel without using a lot of energy because of their great soaring techniques.
Every since my dad was young boy, he had a love for flying and soaring. He had his own decathlon, which he loved maneuvering through the sky. In his later years, my dad earned his soaring license and owned his own glider.
A glider significantly resembles the flight of an eagle. You spread your wings, catch a thermal, and soar. The flight is quiet. You are one with the clouds. You set your vision on the world beneath you and you feel at peace.
No doubt, my dad experienced an eagle’s great flight.
Im sure my dad was also equally impressed by an eagle’s visionary qualities. They have binocular-like vision. Eagles have a greater depth of vision than that of a human. They also have greater field-depth-of-vision, which means that they can see details that you and I would not. They can notice the small differences between the environment and any living creature moving around in it.
Or maybe... my dad loved best of all... the fearlessness and strength of an eagle. Their intelligent minds and strong bodies help them to live and survive in the wild for decades. They are nefficient and sophisticated. They are creators and carpenters... they add to their nest year after year and care for their family. The largest eagle nest recorded measured 9.5 feet in diameter and 20 feet deep.
An eagle’s eyes are fiece and focused. Their talons are ready to grab what life has to offer them. They are never afraid.
Eagles are the symbol of bravery, courage, vision, pride, determination, tenacity, and grace.
I know in my heart that my dad’s appreciation for eagles stretches FAR WIDER than of all these magnificant facts.
What I BELIEVE my dad knew ABOVE ANYTHING ELSE, is that OUR GOD, OUR HEAVENLY FATHER... is JUST LIKE AN EAGLE.
God is contantly carrying us on his wings, helping us to soar in this lifetime.
He gently guides us to safety when we need his grace and mercy. He helps us spread our wings and soar into the thermals.
Our Heavenly Father, just like the eagle, loves and cherishes his children. With patience... he teaches and encourages us.
Eagles are known to spread their wings with their eaglets perched on top. As they fly, they gently lower their wings... allowing the younger ones to try their OWN wings... JUST in time to swoop underneath and catch them.
For the stragler who doesn’t want to fly, the eagle will gradually destroy the nest so that the baby has no choice BUT to fly.
God created eagles to encourage us to soar over the challenges life gives us... and to remind our hearts that HE is always by our side. HE is our GREATEST co-pilot.
The bible, with its masterful teachings, uses eagles to teach many spiritual principles.
Dueteronomy 32: 10-12 uses eagles to demonstrate God’s protection and guidance over the lives of those who follow Him.
“He found in him a desert land and in the wasteland, a howling wilderness; He encircled him, He instructed him, He kept him as the apple of his eye. As an eagle stirs up its nest, hovers over its young, spreading out its wings, taking them up, carrying them on its wings, so the Lord alone led him, and there was no foreign god with him.”
The book of Job uses eagles in a different way. In this book, Job questions God about his suffering. God never directly answers Job’s questions. Instead, He points Job to nature to illustrate things about himself.In Job 39:26-27, God says,
“Is it by your understanding that the hawk soars and spreads his wings toward the south? Is it at your command that the eagle mounts up and makes his nest on high?”
God uses eagles in the book of Job to illustrate that HIS ways are far beyond human comprehension
He sternly, masterfully, and gently tells Job that human beings cannot fully understand the ways of God, but we CAN trust Him.
An author by the name of Pasquale Mingarelli, writes that...
like a masterful craftsman, God designed eagles to soar and live life. We stand amazed by them and marvel at their flight, but God simply says...“Yeah, I made them. No problem. And you have no idea how I did it.“
God knew what he was doing when he created eagles. He ALWAYS knows what HE is doing. We often do not understand why things happen, but God always does. Like Job, we often question God. But HE is the one who designed nature and HE is the one who designed us.
God, like a good and faithful father, asks us to trust Him and tells us, as he told Job, that we do not know all that HE KNOWS!
He is our maker and our protector. Our guide, strength, and inspiration.
The maker and keeper of the eagles, IS WORTHY of our trust.
Our Heavenly Father, like the eagle, provides us with many opportunities to soar. To be tenacious. To be courageous.
And when we feel like we are falling... God Our Father... like the eagle... helps us renew our strength. We find refuge in the shelter of his wings... and with his grace, we can sing with joy again.
Doesn’t this ALSO equally describe the blessings of a father.
I believe that God created fathers to bravely care for his children.
He knew that a father shares the same characteristics as a mighty eagle.
Fathers are encouragers. They push us to take flight in this lifetime, but are there when we need a safe place to land.
Father’s are our teachers. They lead by a courageous example until just the right time... when they know we can try things on our own.
Fathers have a strong vision for our lives. They are focused and steady. They expect a lot from us becasue they know our potential. They challenge us because they know we have been destined for greatness.
Fathers are tenacious... they are fearless and they like a challenge. Like the eagle... when a storm cloud gathers, they get excited. They use the storm’s wind to lift themselves higher, far above the clouds.
They show no fear because they know that... with God by theirside, ANYTHING is possible. Fathers encourage their children to live in the moment.
And when the storm clouds gather in life, THAT IS THE EXACT TIME to show the world everything you’ve got!
My dad lived with no regrets. After all, he spent his lifetime with God by his side and followed the advice of an eagle:
Let your spirit soar.
See the big picture.
Honor the Earth and Sky.
Keep your goals in sight.
Whenever I am missing you, I look up to Heaven’s skies.
You are the twinkle in the stars, the sunset and sunrise.
You are the raindrop and the rainbow.
You are the ocean waves of blue.
Everywhere I go I know,
I am everything because of you.
It was your love and guidance that reinforced my wings.
You lifted me before I soared toward life’s greater things.
When I am at my best, I know I am your daughter.
For YOU are the wind beneath MY wings.
Divinity Family, Let Us Pray:
Dear God Our Heavenly Father,
We gratefully thank you for giving us our dads.
Watch over them and bless them Lord, and keep them in your care.
May they feel our love for them. This is our heartfelt prayer.
Though we don’t comprehend everything, help us to trust YOUR strength, guidance and protection.
Help us to rest in knowing that YOU have complete understanding of our lives, our future, and all things.
Renew our strength dear Lord and help our wings to soar.
YOU designed the eagles. YOU ARE an amazing father.