For Todd's Birthday
Photo: Oath of Office given to Todd by his father at Commissioning Service William and Mary
Jeanne Harris Weaver (10/22/2016)©
Today is a private day for me. My thoughts are deeply my own. My thoughts are of Todd. My thoughts are of that day I came to know a new being would bless our family. My thoughts are of those moments I shared with Todd, whether just the two of us, or in the midst of our busy family. Today is the day I am thankful he experienced the love of fatherhood. Today, I thank God for the twenty-six years I shared with this remarkable person. Today is the day I am thankful, O Lord, for the knowledge Todd is close to You for eternity.
And so, today, I share the following poem as a gift to Todd’s father, my husband. Todd certainly grew into adulthood with the blessings prayed for in this poem below.
A Father's Prayer
“Build me a son, O Lord, who will be strong enough to know when he is weak,
and brave enough to face himself when he is afraid;
one who will be proud and unbending in honest defeat,
and humble and gentle in victory.
“Build me a son whose wishes will not take the place of deeds;
a son who will know Thee—
and that to know himself
is the foundation stone of knowledge.
“Lead him, I pray, not in the path of ease and comfort;
but under the stress and spur of difficulties and challenge.
Here let him learn to stand up in the storm;
here let him learn compassion for those who fail.
“Build me a son whose heart will be clear,
whose goal will be high;
a son who will master himself before he seeks to master other men;
one who will learn to laugh, yet never forget how to weep;
one who will reach into the future, yet never forget the past.
“And after all these things are his, add, I pray,
enough of a sense of humor, so that he may always be serious,
yet never take himself too seriously.
“Give him humility,
so that he may always remember the simplicity of true greatness,
the open mind of true wisdom, the meekness of true strength.
Then I, his father, will dare to whisper,
I have not lived in vain.”
NOTE: written for his son by GEN. Douglas Macarthur
while he served in the South Pacific, WWII.