Father’s Day Posts

Good Intentions by Matt Hammitt

Tyndale Kids

father-and-daughter-walking

Matt Hammitt, lead singer of Sanctus Real and author of  I Couldn’t Love You More,  shares a poem he wrote about fatherhood and the struggles fathers can face as they try to “lead through actions, not just intentions, Spiritual servants, emotionally present.” Happy Father’s Day! 

Good Intentions
by Matt Hammitt

I wanted to be a good leader, husband, father, and friend,
But when I heard my family cry, “Lead me,” I wasn’t sure what to do next.
I always had good intentions, knew what I should do and could be,
But I felt stuck on the treadmill of life and work,
Lost in ideas and dreams.

As time went on through some difficult lessons,
I started to clearly see that my good intentions without any actions,
Were worthless to everyone but me.

My good intentions were a seed without soil,
With nowhere or way to grow.

My good intentions were a car without wheels,
With no way of getting down the road.

I used to say never stop dreaming,
And maybe that’s still a good thing,
But there’s no point in dreaming,
If you never start doing,
Cause without doing, nothing can change.

So I took the intentions in my head and my heart,
Started using my hands to build a home,
Make a mark.

I scheduled time to be together,
Create moments,
Cultivate laughter,
Read God’s Word,
Teach and learn.

Pray with each other,
Become a better listener,
Spend quality time, not just talk about it,
Face a hard issue instead of skating around it.

Raising a family,
Building a home,
Creating a safe place to be loved and known.

I’m just one little house, but imagine a world,
where daddies were always there for their girls.
They silenced their phones and shut out the noise,
To focus on wrestling through life with their boys.
Leading through actions, not just intentions,
Spiritual servants, emotionally present.
Imagine a world where every child felt loved,
Where women weren’t lonely ‘cause they felt understood.
A world where families stayed together,
The fabric of culture grew stronger and better,
Less about me, more about us,
Sacrificially building a home with true love.


Matt Hammitt is the lead singer and a founding member of the band Sanctus Real. He is the co-author (along with Jason Ingram) of  I Couldn’t Love You More, a sweet story with a loving, yet powerful message: I couldn’t love you more, but there is someone who does. This engaging picture book combines lovable and irresistible images with the lyrics from the song I Couldn’t Love You More, on Sanctus Real’s album, Every Fallen Tear.

When Matt and his wife, Sarah, were halfway through her third pregnancy, they discovered their son would be born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS), a rare congenital defect. Matt and Sarah’s son, Bowen, was born on 9/9/10 and received a huge following through the Hammitts’ blog (bowensheart.com), K-LOVE, and ABC News. A portion of the proceeds from the book I Couldn’t Love You More  goes to the foundation the Hammitts have started to help parents with children who have this heart condition.


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Portraits of My Father by Matt Mikalatos

Today’s post is a Father’s Day week guest post from Matt Mikalatos.  Matt is not only the author of Imaginary Jesus, he’s also a father and a son.

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Dear Dad,

This year for Father’s Day I wanted to share with you a few memories I have of you, and the lessons I learned as a result.

One.  Family legend says that once upon a time when I was a child and Mom was out of the house, I marked my hand with a green marker and you said nonchalantly, “You must be turning into the Incredible Hulk.”  This probably wouldn’t have fazed most five year olds, but I had spent many Saturdays watching Monster Matinees with you, and I started to wail uncontrollably.  You worked hard to convince me that a little green marker wasn’t something to worry about, but it was Mom that solved the crying when she got home and scrubbed the offending green off.  You’ve reminded me many times over the years that a little green mark does not equal turning into a monster.

Two. I have many memories of you, sleeves rolled up and elbow deep in dish water.  I remember you walking through the house with towering piles of laundry.  I remember you vacuuming, and crawling into the wet darkness under the house to install a sump pump. When I first heard someone refer to something as “woman’s work” I knew that was a ridiculous concept, because you taught me that a father serves his family however he can.

Three. You drove me 426 miles to drop me off at college.  You helped me move my stuff into the dorm room.  You took me out to a meal.  And then, when I awkwardly suggested you might want to stay in my dorm room while I went to the all-dorm showing of “The Crow” on a sheet between our dorms, you propped yourself up with a book and stayed out of sight.  You never mentioned that you were leaving in the morning, that you had driven all this way to spend time with me, or that you had introduced me to movies like the Crow in the first place.  You taught me that a father keeps loving his son even when he’s not as grateful as he should be.

Four.  When I got in trouble, you would come to my room and give me these long, rambling speeches.  You repeat yourself in slightly different wording four or five times until I was completely infuriated.  But I realized a few years ago that you do the same thing when you are handing out praise.  You keep searching for the perfect way to say, “I’m proud of you, son,” or “I love you” to the point that you don’t need to say it anymore and I want to say, I know, Dad, I know that you’re proud and you love me.  But you keep on saying it, even though I already get what you’re trying to say.

Five.  Multiple times a week I take my little ten month old daughter to your house, and you chase her around on the floor, growling and tickling her, and she laughs hysterically and loves it.  You taught me that once you’re a dad, you’re always a dad… either a good one or a bad one.  You’ve told me before that you think I’m a great dad, with a sort of mystified expression on your face, like you’re wondering, Where did you learn how to do that?  I’m surprised you don’t know.  I learned it from you, Dad.  Thank you for teaching me to be a good husband and father.  Happy Father’s Day.  I’m proud of you, and I love you.

Your son,

Matt

Matt Mikalatos received his BA in writing from the University of California Riverside. Like many future world leaders, he began his career as a clerk at a comic book store. Having discovered that such work caused women to shun him, Matt took control of a high school classroom and taught American literature and drama (although he was best known for his riotous “study halls”). Then Matt, in an unexpected move, joined Campus Crusade for Christ. In a moment of weakness, his best friend, Krista, agreed to marry him. He and Krista were briefly expatriated by Crusade to East Asia, where they ministered for three years. Now back in the States, Matt provides leadership to the international ministries of Crusade’s northwest region. Matt has published articles in Discipleship Journal, The Wittenburg Door, Relief, and Coach’s Midnight Diner. Matt and his wife live near Portland, Oregon. They have three beautiful daughters.

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Father’s Day Week: Reviews From Kids

When our books or Bibles get reviewed we see tons of magazines, newspapers, and blog links.  Every once in awhile we get some really creative, unique reviews, and we can’t help but share them.  Because it’s the week of Father’s Day, it’s fitting to show how one father helped his kids share their love of their Bibles with the world.

Joel, our friend from the blog The Church of Jesus Christ, recently sat down with his daughter and son and had them talk about the new Bibles they’ve been enjoying.  Here’s a shot of the Bibles his family takes to church on Sundays.

"The NLT-Only Family Goes to Church"

It was great to see the Mosaic Bible in the mix; it’s the Bible I’ve been carrying to church lately.

Here’s Abigael  talking about her Girls Life Application Study Bible (with a little coaching from Mom and Dad). My favorite part is hearing the future NLT user in the background; she is already enthusiastically trying to participate in discussion of the Bible.

Here’s Landon talking about his Metal Bible NLT: Camouflage.   It was cool to see him go to talk about what was in the Bible first, before he thought to talk about the cool camouflage cover. Joel cracks me up at the end.

Joel also reviewed these two Bibles on his blog, The Church of Jesus Christ.  I’m sure he wouldn’t mind if you followed him on Twitter either: @PolycarpTCOJC

Joel’s Review of the Metal Bible NLT

Joel’s Review of the Girls Life Application Study Bible

Stay tuned for a special Father’s Day week giveaway!