This is my dad. He is smart, he is hard working, he is resourceful, he is faithful and he is resilient. He’s also creative, discerning, loving and compassionate. When I was a boy I used to love holding his hand because he’d grip it so tightly that I always felt safe and secure. I always remember my dad having such great focus; whatever he set his sights on he achieved. There was never any doubt in our family if dad could do what he was doing - it was a given. I don’t remember anything unfinished that my dad started.

Many of the things I delight in, I learnt from him. The satisfaction found in diligent research, the joy of purchasing quality goods, the reward that comes from hard work, the love of God’s word, the sense of peace that comes from quality time alone and the contentment of a great meal.

As you grow up, the things you are grateful for shift. As a boy I was grateful for his hand holding; as a teenager his skateboard ramp building skills; as a young adult his deep pockets and as a grown man for his wisdom and advice. Most recently I find myself enormously grateful for his care of my mother who was diagnosed at the start of this year with cancer. A horrible disease - one that he has battled himself several times - but this version is particularly nasty. As I live my life on the other side of the world, unable to offer anything other than constant thought and persistent prayer, I find myself enormously grateful for his efforts as caregiver. I know that the same creativity, resourcefulness, faithfulness and resilience that I saw growing up is being put to outstanding work. On this father’s day I am grateful for the dad I had and the dad I have.

I love you dad. Thank you for everything.