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The Journey Continues: Father’s Day 2018

On this Father’s Day Sunday, my journey takes me back to my own father, James Maurice Lanning.

In 1912, he was delivered during an ice storm by his father in a log cabin in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas.

At that time, his father was a medical student at The University of Arkansas, Little Rock. Following his graduation, Dr. Lanning and my grandmother divorced which led to my dad’s memories of a tumultuous childhood. Dr. Lanning departed Arkansas for a succession of oil field boom towns in Texas including Crane, where my dad graduated from the first High School graduating class in 1930.

After a stint at Texas A&M College, my dad married Alice Coskey, a good friend of his sister – both studying at Sam Houston. Then they landed on a west Texas ranch near Sweetwater. Until his death he was in competition with drought, screw worms, deflated prices, and cut-throat cattle traders to make a living. Through all this our family thrived.

In my possession is a letter from him to his mother announcing my birth – one sentence read: “now I have a son, I will start going to church.” And he did; becoming a Sunday school teacher to adult men. My dad had two favorite sayings: “Never trust a man past his own self-interest” and “The way you get to know a man is to look at the scars on him.”

We all get wounded and bear the scars from life – scars, after all, are the result of a healed wound. But I take solace knowing that God sent a man, Jesus Christ, like ourselves who went through life meeting all the knocks and temptations, dangers, disappointments and wounds that strike us – even unto the cross. I know that there is no wounds in my life that Jesus did not experience in his life.

Jesus said in John 14:9, “He that hath seen me hath seen the Father.” The son, Jesus, understood and trusted God so well that he could say that anyone who knew his life and character would really understand what God is like. Fathers, today, remember you have a heavenly father who loves you.

San Marcos Record

(512) 392-2458
P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666