How My Dad Taught Me the Power of Unwavering Faith

Southeastern Utah, 1994

My dad has a quiet power about him that I can’t quite put my finger on. And even when life threw us curveballs — which it definitely did — he never wavered in his faith. Through all the highs and lows, he showed me what it means to have unwavering faith. His example has influenced many decisions I’ve made in my own life, and for that, I’m grateful.

My dad was raised in a “tough love” household, where his parents believed that the only way to rear a child properly was through strict discipline and a patriarchal parenting style. As a result, my dad was never allowed to get away with anything.

If he made a mistake, he was immediately corrected.

If he didn’t clean his room to their standards, he was given extra chores.

And if he stepped out of line, he was swiftly disciplined.

While this parenting style may have been the norm back then, I can’t help but wonder if my dad’s upbringing contributed to his own approach to being a dad.

I rebelled against his approach, and because of that I recall being at odds with my dad throughout my childhood, especially throughout my teenage years. It felt like we never saw eye to eye. After all these years, I still feel as if our relationship is tenuous at times.

Every year, when Father’s Day rolls around and everyone is posting all these beautiful sentiments about their dads, I sometimes feel like either people had way better dads than I did or they aren’t telling the whole story.

I sat and pondered this as Father’s Day was approaching this year. Since I had just started this blog, I wanted to write something, but nothing really felt right. It all felt forced, fake, or sugar coated.

Then, on Father’s Day, I was sitting in church thinking about this, and it just hit me — while my dad was far from perfect (what dad isn’t?), there was one gift that he gave me that truly stands out above all the rest — the power of unwavering faith.

My dad seemed blessed with the gift of faith, I would say in a large part due to his upbringing. No matter what was going on in life, his faith was the one constant.

When I was a rebellious teenager, he showed me faith.

When out of a job after layoffs at work, he showed me faith.

While stressing over failed business ventures, he showed me faith.

When struggling to understand his role after he and my mom got divorced, he showed me faith.

My dad with my daughter, 2016

The dictionary defines faith as “confidence or trust in a person or thing.” In our home, lessons on faith were centered around faith in Jesus Christ and his Gospel and its power to help us obtain a knowledge and testimony of Jesus Christ. As I have grown and studied more on faith, I have learned that the power of faith can affect us well beyond a powerful testimony.

It is a gift of sight.

To me, it is the ability to:

  • See what cannot be seen.
  • See past your current circumstances and into the future.
  • See what God has in store for you.
  • See past your current limitations and into your potential.
  • See the greatness that lies within you.
  • See (and unlock!) your God-given potential.

Even more than just a gift of sight…

Faith builds the foundation on which your dreams are built.

Faith generates the power that will enable you to let go of your past and move forward into your future.

Faith provides the light that will guide you through the dark times in your life.

Faith builds the bridge that will take you from where you are today to where you want to be tomorrow.

Faith establishes the hope that will sustain you when all else fails.

Faith strengthens your resolve to keep going when you feel like giving up.

Faith solidifies your belief in yourself as a divine being, capable of anything and everything, even when it seems nobody else believes in you.

When we have faith in ourselves, we are able to accomplish anything we set our minds to. We are confident in our abilities and know that we have what it takes to succeed. We are also able to take risks, because we believe in our own strength and abilities.

This leads us to expect certain blessings and abundance to come our way…

…which in turn gets us to start focusing on a life where we possess the blessings and abundance we desire…

…which in turn will help us attract those blessings and abundance into our life.

Faith is an essential part of life — unwavering faith starts a chain reaction that leads to fulfilled dreams!

Growing up, it was a principle that felt completely one-sided to me — faith should be Gospel-oriented only and should have nothing to do with life outside of church. As I have grown older (and gained more experience), I’ve learned that faith permeates everything we do in life.

I will be forever grateful to my dad for instilling this mighty gift into my soul! Thanks, dad, and happy belated Father’s day. I love you.

Jonathan Haws

I am a devoted family man and enjoy going on adventures with my wife and four children. My deepest desire is to be the best husband, father, and friend I can be by inspiring a love for life, a connection with nature, and a willingness to let God prevail.

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