I’ve always had a great love and respect for my father. He’s the hardest worker I know. Coming from very little and breaking the cycle of poverty in his family, he has established a small trucking company that has become successful through hard work and commitment. There are still many times when he has to go out in the middle of the night to take care of things for his work but he has always done it without complaining. And no matter how hard or how late he works, he always puts his family first. He’s there for us no matter what.
My father taught my brother and me what it means to be a man of God, knowing that you’re not going to be perfect, but you should always strive to do what’s right and honorable. Now that I’m a grown man, my relationship with my father is even stronger. In fact, if we don’t see each other every day, we at least talk every day. He is someone I know I can rely on. Even though I like to be pretty self-sufficient and handle things on my own (a trait I picked up from him), when I do come to him for anything, he’s there for me.
When I was growing up, he always believed in me. Whether I wanted to pursue something in basketball, football, baseball, or school, he supported me and taught me how to persevere. Quitting was never an option; if I had made a commitment to start something, he made sure that I saw it through to the end. I’m thankful for the way he instilled this sense of perseverance and discipline in me.
I specifically remember a time when I first arrived at college and wasn’t playing as much as I wanted to. I was waking up early to meet with tutors, going to class, then practice, and then back to meet with tutors. I was not used to that type of schedule. I called my dad in tears and he assured me that my hard work would pay off, “This is what you have been training for your whole life. If you give up now, you will regret it for the rest of your life.”
These are the same words that Christ has for us when we face hardships.
“You know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking in anything.” —James 1:3-4
Coming from where he did, beating the odds, and setting a standard for our family for generations to come, my dad is more than a successful husband, father, and businessman. My dad couldn’t have done all of that on his own, he’s always put Christ at the forefront of his mind, guiding his life. It shows a that a strong individual can come from nothing, having no father figure himself, and grow to display to others, the love, strength, and grace of the Heavenly Father.
Brandon Boykin is a defensive back for the Baltimore Ravens. He is a regular contributor to The Increase and will be providing monthly articles and opinions.