A Gentle Warrior ~ Tribute to My Dad

I have posted it before, but this is one of my favorite pictures of Daddy

I have posted it before, but this is one of my favorite pictures of Daddy (aka Bob Stephens)

My sweet dad went to heaven two years ago today.  I wrote this poem the morning after he died.  I post it again as a tribute to the finest man I ever knew!  Although I miss him, I wouldn’t want him to return to this earth and all his suffering for anything.  Miss you Daddy!  Hoping we will see you soon!

Real heroes in battles
Are often unsung
Those that bravely defend
Yet refuse recognition when done.

 My dad was one of those
A hero, no doubt
Suffering all kinds of wars
But giving others’ praise was his shout.

 The kind of warrior
Who rare did complain
When the battles were fierce
He would let his faith alone sustain.

 A contradiction, of sorts
Though champion for sure:
Brave enough to conquer
Yet kind enough, our hearts he did stir.

 Touching lives everywhere
With his gentle ways
And no matter the storm
To God he would yield his highest praise.

 When life seemed so unfair
And dealt a hard blow
Dad could only conclude
Some things, only in heaven will we know.

 Faced with hardships untold
In a war few could bear
He plunged through with such grace
Blessing others, yet so unaware.

 Now, his battle’s over
His race has been run
My war-weary hero
Has at last through Christ the victory won.

 I miss him so dearly
But my heart is relieved
Knowing one day we’ll be
Reunited for eternity.

 Though in life he refused
Any kind of praise
I feel very certain
With the Lord, he in heaven now reigns.

 Rewards, accolades
He passed, that’s for sure
But to me he’ll always be
My wonderful, gentle warrior.

 Sue Nash


67 thoughts on “A Gentle Warrior ~ Tribute to My Dad

  1. Teri Metts

    What an awesome, beautiful tribute to your dad!! My dad went home to be with Jesus two years ago this past March, so I can relate to how you must be missing your dad. Praying for you, my friend.

    Also, I really enjoyed your two-part post on bridling our mouths/tongues. A real toe-stomper, but a very truthful word.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Thanks, Teri. I know you miss your mom. I think we will see them soon based on all the signs of the times! Thanks, also for your feedback about the series. Have had this on my heart for months, but didn’t have the courage to post it because I didn’t want people to think I was being judgmental I hope it didn’t come across that way.

      Sent from my iPhone

      1. Teri Metts

        Sue, I can relate to being hesitant to share a hard word, but you handled it very well. In fact, when you admit these are areas where you struggle, and that you’re speaking as much if not more to yourself than others, how can that be judgmental? In that way you’re basically saying, “This is where God is working in my life, and I’m just sharing with you.” Keep up the good work!

      2. heavenlyraindrops Post author

        Thanks, Teri. Just sometimes hard to make sure what you intended to communicate actually came across that way. I appreciate the feedback, especially on this particular post!

        Sent from my iPhone

  2. Jane Bridges

    This is beautiful, Sue and was “so Bob!” He was exactly all that you said and more!!!! I thought about you early this morning and prayed for you, Jean and your family as you think about Bob’s passing today. I meant to send you a note but work has kept me bound until now. You KNOW how much I loved Bob and will ALWAYS remember him with great respect for the wonderful man he was!!!! Missing him today with you!!!!

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Thanks, Jane. The signs are just too prevalent to not believe that our time left here is short. I think we will see our loved ones soon!

      Sent from my iPhone

  3. Rene Yoshi

    Aww, what a wonderful tribute. It brought tears to my eyes, especially as I think of missing my dad, too. The portrait and poem are wonderful.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Sorry that you lost your dad, too. How wonderful that as Believers, we will see our loved ones again. This time of missing them will be but a faded memory. Thanks.

  4. Heidi Viars

    what a beautiful tribute to your father … what a blessing to read about him here … a tiny glimpse of a life well lived … thank you for sharing

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      He did run his race well and his example has been a guiding force in my life. Like all of us who have lost loved ones in Christ, we will see them again! Thanks so much, Heidi.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Yes, he is now experiencing the joy and pleasures of heaven that I long for. I think we will all see our loved ones in Christ very soon, time is so short. Thanks for kind feedback and thanks also for the follow. Blessings, always.

  5. cuffesisters

    Oh how we miss our dad, too. Wouldn’t wish him back from the presence of Jesus, because he’s experiencing no pain or suffering (he had parkinsons and lung issues), but so wish I could give him one more hug. This was a beautiful tribute, Sue – well done!

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Thanks. I would love a hug. I think the thing I miss the most, other than how he could make me laugh, is his wisdom.
      Can’t wait to see him in heaven. Hey, I’ll get to meet your dad, too! How cool!

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Would be an honor. An honor for my dad and a blessing for me. He was a Korean vet, qualified for a purple heart for being shot twice, but refused the award. In his opinion, “the real heroes are the ones who didn’t come home.” There was so much about him that those who disdained him when he got so disfigured didn’t know or understand. True of so many!
      I am the one crying,now, but they are tears of joy. I have been telling my husband how much I enjoy your stories. He is not (yet) into blogging, but your site is one I am trying to get him to join. Thank you for your kind feedback. Blessings for all the ways you bless others!

  6. vonhonnauldt

    I never really knew my dad, a veteran of WWII, though he survived the war. I have only a couple of memories of him. How blessed you are with your dad, even though he’s gone ahead to wait for you in heaven. Thanks for giving us a glimpse of “dad”.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      I am sorry that you never had the chance to know your dad well. How proud you must be for his honorable service, though. I don’t take lightly the gift I had in my dad and anticipate the time when we will meet again in heaven (soon, I think). Thanks so much.

      1. vonhonnauldt

        Thank you. His official (at least I guess it’s official), Army portrait hangs in our hallway. Thanks for the “likes” and follow.

        “To the praise of the glory of His grace.”

  7. Mary

    Sue, there is such a sweetness that speaks softly and profoundly in your writing. Truly, the Lord has given you a talent and all who read your posts are blessed from having done so. I love your poem about your dad – what a beautiful tribute! I, too, wrote about a loved one who went on to be to glory, entitled: “Remembering Grandpa.” Please feel free to visit my blog “From the Heart” when time permits. Blessings!

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      I enjoyed this post very much. I have a fondness for old pictures, and I loved the ones of your grandpa. Thanks for your kind remarks and for the follow. Blessings, always

  8. inspireddaybyday

    So beautiful! So glad your dad left you such an example and a legacy of his great faith.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Absolutely, a legacy. I always tried to show him (and still do with my mom) my gratitude for the gift of a loving, godly upbringing. Thanks for stopping by to read my poem. Blessings!

  9. bennythomas

    Let me also wish you that your father evoke good feelings even after he is gone. We all begin growing in awe of our fathers and learn to respect hidden qualities we missed in our awe; and when frail and die we know our fathers in their entirety escaped us. Our mothers know some parts which we may never know, as associates and colleagues know some missing pieces. But after death we know some spiritual truths they represent in the way we bring out inadequately in most cases, but thankful they provided a spiritual anchor to tie us to in our journey whenever we require.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Thanks. I was blessed to have been raised by phenomenal parents who raised me to know Christ. My dad was always my hero. Watching how graciously he endured his final time on earth was a particular testimony of his faith in God within. Blessings back your way. Sue

  10. ddclaywriter

    Thanks for sharing your poem about your father. Quiet strength and an unwavering trust in God are dying virtues. Sad for you and your family that he is gone, but he is enjoying his place of well deserved rest and peace.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Yes! I cannot wait to see him in heaven, but while I wait I pray that what God began in me through the teaching and modeling of these godly virtues from both of my parents, He will carry on to completion in me, also. Thanks so much. Blessings.

      1. ddclaywriter

        That’s great to hear. I came from a different type of home. I didn’t have good parental models. It would be interesting to see the percentages of kids who go on to follow the Lord from good homes as opposed to those who were led to the Lord by other means.
        The Bible shows us that many godly men and women didn’t raise godly kids.
        You are a special exception to the rule probably.
        so glad to hear you are following their great examples.

      2. heavenlyraindrops Post author

        I am so sorry about your difficult upbringing, but how wonderful that God found you even though your parents were not the ones leading you to Him. He is so gracious and loving. I do recognize that how I was raised was a blessed gift, one that fewer these days experience. Although I don’t have any stats, either, I am banking on God’s faithfulness to how we have tried to raise our children with godly principles, modeling the love and truth of Christ before them. With God’s help, I am trying to pass on the legacy I was given. I am counting on His promise that ‘when a child is trained up in the ways of the Lord, when he is old will not depart from it.’ I will pray that whatever heartache you experienced from childhood, God will mend through the power of His love and grace. Thanks for the honest remarks. Blessings, always. Sue

      3. ddclaywriter

        Thanks Sue,
        God has shown me long ago how important it was for me to go through what I did. I feel privileged to be honest that he led me the way he did.
        He revealed himself to me as my real father when my earthly dad had left long before. I loved my dad very much but he wasn’t at home. I feel so privileged that God did that for me.
        There were many disadvantages at the times and there were and are life long scars that are with me until my body is traded for the new one in glory.
        I anguished often over it years ago, but there was good reason for it.
        I have three daughters now who we have raised to be good godly girls but life has challenges them and they will all have to stand up for their faith. they all love the Lord but they are at varying strengths. One is weaker now than before and another is stronger than before. That will change for the three of them as time goes by.
        As a Christian parent, like you we hurt for the struggles of life they go through, but that struggle, like the ones I went through and you went through are important times to test our faith in God Almighty.

        Thanks for sharing Sue.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Amen to believing that God is bringing our children back as He guides them in their own walk with the Lord. My prodigals are at varying levels and strengths in that walk, too. Holding on to God’s faithfulness to finish the good work He began through our efforts to raise them in truth. Glad to hear how even though you were not given a godly heritage, you have begun one and are now passing that on to your children. Thanks so much for sharing.

  11. Pingback: A Gentle Warrior ~ Tribute to My Dad | pastorglen52

  12. Sandra

    Reblogged this on Yakkergirl's Blog and commented:
    It’s been just over two years since we lost our Dad, too. Perhaps they’re hanging out together, talking about travel, the beauty of nature, and unsung heroes.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      The same day. Wow. I imagine your pain then was a great as mine. I asked my husband, during the intensity of the hurt, when the rub would go away. He has lost both of his parents,so I figured he ought to know. He paused, then said, “It never does. You just learn to replace the painful memories with good ones.” Blessings on your journey. Sue

      1. Sandra

        I know, same day. I was with him when he passed away, watched him take his last breath.
        Your husband is like mine. He lost his mom of breast cancer, his sister five days later (downs), and then his dad of Alzheimer’s complications six months later. He’s been my stalwart, my hope, and my blessing.
        Blessings on your journey, too.

      2. heavenlyraindrops Post author

        Amen for wonderful husbands. I was with my dad, too. What a blessing for believers, that we WILL see our loved ones in Christ again. Cannot wait!

      3. heavenlyraindrops Post author

        I am very sorry for your losses. Thankfully, I still have my mom and try to treasure every moment we share. Your photos are beautiful. I have been posting many I take on my blog, but make no boasts of professionalism. Would love to read your poem about your mom. Blessings, always. Sue

  13. bbrunophotography

    Sue, your dad was a wise man. It’s true – some things we will only know in heaven. For now, that is enough.

    I lost my mom quite suddenly (in her sleep) in 2004 and my dad joined her in heaven in 2006. Two years, two parents. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of them, and like you–I wrote a poem in the wee hours of the night the morning after my mom died. I believe God gives us words at times like those to comfort ourselves and later, to comfort others. Thank you for sharing this intimate moment with us. It was a real blessing to read this morning.

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Thanks so much. The pain of his death has lessened, but it will bubble up unexpectedly. So happy that we will see our loved ones in Christ again. Cannot wait! Blessings back.

  14. mickybnovels

    That is an amazing and heart felt poem, I could really feel the love you shared, his strength and conviction. I know sometimes how the emotions can come to the surface so unexpectedly. Simply things like finding his favourite cup, a song on the radio. He will never be too far away and I truely believe we will all see our loved ones again.

  15. Pastor Roland Ledoux

    Sister Sue, I am so glad I found your site! As soon as I read the poem, I had to follow. I am new to blogging, but I love to read and to teach. I’m not new to the use of the internet though! I have found within just the last couple of months, such a thriving community of Brothers and Sisters in Christ that it boggles the mind. Even though we are not face to face, the Bible tells us that our spirits will bear witness with one another! Another Scripture I have tried to live by is when Jesus said, as recorded in Matthew and Luke, “From the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” I like to paraphrase it for the blog as the principle is the same, “From the abundance of the heart, the pen writes!” It doesn’t take long to see what a person loves. Whether it be in conversation or in writing! I praise God on High for the Leading of His Holy Spirit and the uniting of the Body of Christ into Body ministry such as this!
    My real dad, the one that I gained insight and wisdom from, was my wife’s father and he too went on to be with the Lord a few years ago. We used to talk and talk about anything and everything, but in his years before he went to be with the Lord, his heart was so softened and when he spoke of the Lord, there was such a glint in his eyes! I will never forget him for that and like you, can’t wait for that grand reunion with Christ Jesus at the head and all of us together, united in Christ as our Heavenly Father meant.
    God bless you dearly and continually and I look forward to be inspired even more and ministered (served) as is your awesome gift!!

    1. heavenlyraindrops Post author

      Thank you so much for the kind remarks. Your father-in-law sounded like such a wonderful man of God. I was truly blessed to have had such a God-honoring father. Made it easy to accept the love of my heavenly One. Blessings on your ministry. I look forward to reading your posts. Sue

  16. Pingback: My Favorite Veteran | Heavenly Raindrops

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