My Father by Paul


by Paul Westervelt


As it turns out, my father is not only an electrical engineer but also a talented carpenter, mechanic, painter, wood carver, builder and Scout leader. Growing up in the 60s, though, I thought we were just doing fun things together.

        I’m still not sure if my father was a master strategist or just a dad who wanted to raise a son to authentic manhood. Either way, I fondly remember the countless hours we spent at the workbench in the garage, under the hood of the car, doing carpentry and painting projects and camping. What I experienced as fun Saturday projects I later realized were his way providing me with useful skills that would serve me well for a lifetime. Hard work, good stewardship, pride in craftsmanship and leadership development are just a few of the many lessons I learned without knowing I was in school; dad’s school of life.

        My father was also careful to bring other capable men into my life so that I could experience the fraternity of male Christ followers. Nowhere was this more evident than in the Scouts and on my Uncle’s hog farm where boys and men did things that boys and men do with sharp objects and power tools: chopping, mucking, shooting, burning, whittling, driving, hiking, talking with some hijinks mixed in along the way.

        Now with children and grandchildren of my own I am forever grateful that my father was such a great practitioner of Prov. 22:6: “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.”


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