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From FIC's archive:

A father's example of grace

Dan Nommensen

It’s Father’s Day! It’s that time of year where men everywhere get new ties and gift cards to their favorite local hardware store! Along with the time spent with family and special gifts, on Father’s Day, I can’t help but remember my own father who has now been in heaven for nearly 20 years.

My father was a busy pastor of a large congregation in Milwaukee. As busy as he was, he always seemed to find time to take me fishing or watch my baseball games, and we always enjoyed cutting the lawn together. Each of us had a push mower, and we’d go back and forth for what felt like hours.

Then one day we got a riding lawn mower! When it arrived, my dad looked at me and said, “Well, Dan, go ahead.” I was the first to ride it! Me!

This was the greatest moment of my life up to that point. Off I went! Sure, Dad told me to start off in a low gear, but I was 11 years old! I had ridden go-karts at full speed. I could handle higher speeds. There was nothing but open grass all around me . . . and one clothes pole.

I literally moved that lawn mower 50 feet before hitting that clothes pole. I managed to avoid all the open grass and hit it straight on. The front end of the mower was cracked, the headlight was broken, and part of the metal cover was bent. I felt absolutely, positively horrible. I prepared myself for the biggest punishment I would ever see. What was Dad going to do?

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