Letter #655: Father with Vision

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Dear future,

Sometimes we consume ourselves with what you will look like.

Where will I live? What will I be doing? Who will I be doing life with”…spouse, kids, friends, alone?

My thoughts are often consumed by fleeting things. Things I have zero control over. What if instead I focused on and dreamed about things that matter and that I can control?

I can’t dictate the actions of others. I can’t manage our government. I can’t choose how many boys take me on dates this year.

I can choose how I spend my time. How I develop my character. How I spend my money. What if I focused on the things I get to manage and control? What could you look like if I lived like this?

It’s fun to dream of what could be. Of what my life could look like at the age of 64.

And while I dream about my character development, I’d like to celebrate a man who’s arrived at 64 in a strong way. A man who has developed respectable character. Admirable. At the age of 64, he has become something any of us young pups can look to as an example. And my generation needs examples worthy of following. Papa Roth has developed and grown into a man worthy of following and has become a man of great character.

Confident. Servant. Teachable. Leader. Humble. Hard worker. Funny. Discerning. Wise with money yet generous. Engaging. Encouraging.

I could go on, but you get my point. These are things worthy of striving toward in life that will mean something at 64. I want to live with vision of becoming a woman of character rather than being consumed by things I can’t control. To do this, I must live with purpose. Take ownership of how I spend my time and money. Be diligent in seeing outside myself. The little things today are what will make the big difference years from now.

Dad, you are someone I look to that gives me purpose and vision to live now for what could be at 64. Thanks for leading our family with vision and integrity. Press on and even in your 64th year, be open to what the Lord is teaching you.

Happy 64th Birthday Pops!!!

Striving to live with vision at 26,

Dreamer and believer of what 64 could be

Letter #467: A True Man

Dear men,

I could write a series of letters to you, but I’m not going to do that today. For some reason the topic of you has been on my mind lately. From the way you are being raised, to how you fit into the current state of Christianity and the church, to the way you pursue women and and parent your children. I’m not going to get into all this currently, but know I’ve been praying for the Lord to raise up godly men in our world.

A couple weeks ago I had the chance to listen to Josh McDowell teach. The majority of his talk focused on raising kids in our current society, pornography and the importance of teaching children about sexuality. Well I’m not sure if this is good or bad news for readers, but this is not the subject I’ll be breaching today either.

I was intrigued by one point McDowell made though. He claimed research shows a loving relationship with a father has more impact than any other influence on a child. Are you kidding me?? Simply by a father being present, a child has a better chance of “turning out.’ Statistically a child is exponentially more likely to succeed when a father figure is engaged in their children’s lives. Fellas (all five of you reading), did you read that right?? Your presence matters.

Now there are a ton of angles I could take just from this one statement on today’s post. However, today isn’t about all of you. Today is about one man. Today, I would like to highlight and thank my father, Paul “Sam’ Rother, for not only simply being present but for loving my sisters and I the best way he knew how and continuing to do the same currently despite his baby nearing 25.

'PoPo' and Paxton at Christmas!

Tomorrow Papa Roth turns 62, and I get to be in town to celebrate with him! Tomorrow’s his official big day, but I’ve taken the liberty to celebrate him today. Dad, hope you’re alright with a premature celebration!

Papa & Mama Roth & I do Branson...The Branson Belle that is!

To the dad who instilled the true meaning of hard work into his children, a man of sound work ethic. To the dad who did what was right despite the consequences, a man of integrity. To the dad who showed up, a man who’s actions speak louder than his words. To the dad who makes us laugh (even if it is a bit out of embarrassment), a man with a hilarious sense of humor. To the dad who chooses to love his wife faithfully and well, a man striving to be a better husband. To the dad who provides for others before himself, a man living selflessly. To the dad who has become the “PoPo’ my nephews adore, a man leaving a legacy bigger than himself. To the dad who is growing and learning now more than ever, a man seeking Christ.

Papa Roth's whole brood...you have a good lookin' bunch if I may say so myself!

Men, engage with your children. Model the way a man should live, the way a man should love his wife. If you didn’t have a great father figure, seek someone out like my dad to learn from and to teach you.

Dad, Happy Birthday. Thanks for being engaged, present and loving us well. We sure love you and are excited to celebrate you. You are the best!

Thankful for Papa Roth, a true man,

Your baby girl

Letter #141: The Best, Hands Down

Dear best,

Everybody is waiting for the final of “The Three B’s,’ and unfortunately you’re not it. I’ve postponed the regularly scheduled “direction‘ I attempted to gain for a very important event. The third “B’ will be revealed tomorrow.

In the meantime, you need to be addressed. There are many things in life that claim to be you. Every car brand has a commercial claiming you…or at least Eminem claiming you for them! We’re always looking for you when it comes to bargains…where can we find the cheapest groceries, dinner or vacation?! Every sorority/fraternity claims you throughout the year through “Recruitment,’ competitions and party statuses. Everywhere we look, you are being claimed.

Forget all these things because today I’m claiming you. Personally, I don’t really care what you are in life, but rather I concern myself more with giving all I have to achieve you in life.

However, today, you are at the forefront of my mind. Today is an important day at Casa de la Roth. Today, we celebrate you because it’s Papa Roth’s 61st birthday, and he is hands down you when it comes to being a Dad. Papa Roth, the best Dad in the world, is the man in life I admire most and has taught me more than he’ll ever know. Today, we celebrate you.

Papa Roth’s instilled a work ethic in me I’m grateful to have. I wasn’t born in the early years, but he essentially built his business from scratch in his younger years to what it is today. He never let our house go unkept and laziness was not an option when we were kids. Heck, he even provided the gas for me to start my own lawn mowing business! I may have hated it in the moment, but today, I’m thankful.

Papa Roth’s been supportive in every way during my 23 years. There’s not a thing I can think of I wanted to pursue he didn’t agree to…well, at least on his outward appearance! Honestly, he probably wasn’t thrilled about Beanie Babies! He was the Dad that rearranged his work schedule to make every possible game I played in and, most of the time, found the balance of encouraging my efforts while still giving me tips to improve. Even when he didn’t understand, he’s the first person to put his stamp of approval on me attending the Kanakuk Institute because he knew it’s what I truly wanted to do. He’s supportive beyond belief, and I couldn’t be more thankful.

Hahaha, a gag gift Dad got for Christmas a few years ago!

Papa Roth has a thousand qualities to highlight, but my current favorite is his desire to learn, grow and change rather than be set in his ways. The man even got an iPad for Christmas and learned to use it!! In all reality, he’s more giving, more loving, more affirming, more sensitive because he’s walking more with the Lord at 61 than ever before. I’m challenged by his willingness to become more like Christ.

Hands down, Papa Roth is you. He is a better Dad than my sisters and I deserve, but we sure are grateful. He has set the bar high for whatever schmuck comes along in my life! Today, I wish I could celebrate at Casa de la Roth with the family, but from afar, I celebrate you: The Best Dad in the World!

Birthday does not equal the third “B,’ but it’s coming tomorrow,

Grateful daughter