Randy Nation & Kiel Nation

My dad and I after I shot my first deer.

1. My Dad is a Dad

  • According to my mom, when she and my dad adopted me in Lexington, KY when I was 3 days old, my dad was looking at me so much on the drive home that he nearly wrecked the car several times.
  • My dad has never ended a conversation with me without telling me he loves me.
  • My dad would sometimes cry when he disciplined me.
  • My dad prays for me, and always has.

2. My Dad is a Farmer

  • My dad can grow anything.
  • My dad can build and fix anything.
  • When a snake, or a mole, or any other unwelcome beast made its way into our garden, my dad dealt with it by using a 2 x 4 to the head.
  • As a kid, when I would run from snakes I came across while playing outside, my dad would run toward them and kill them. It happened quite a bit. Eventually he and my grandfather taught me to deal with them myself.

3. My Dad is a Carpenter

  • My dad taught me how to swing a hammer when I was 4.
  • My dad used to let me make swords with scrap wood in his shop.
  • My dad would always let me in his wood shop with him while he was working late at night, and would carry me to the house after I would fall asleep on his work bench.
  • When I was 8 my dad built our family a two story house with a full basement, a huge deck and an epic playground. He did it with some help from friends over the course of two years.

4. My Dad is a Pastor

  • My dad once told me you don’t really love someone unless you love them when they are at their worst.
  • My dad leads with the philosophy that those who are in danger take precedence over those who are safe, and actively prays for and pursues opportunities to see those that don’t know Jesus come to love Him.
  • In Jr. High I got caught in several lies and then I almost got arrested for vandalism. On the drive home from the scene of the crime, with tears in his eyes, my dad talked to me about the reality of Hell.
  • Alongside seeing him preach every Sunday, my dad would take me with him on his hospital visits, funerals, weddings and visits to the elderly. He was the same man I knew at home everywhere he went.
  • Every Saturday night my dad practices his sermon by himself in an empty sanctuary. As a kid I would go with him to play basketball in the gym. I know every preacher has a different method, but seeing dad work all week, and then give his Saturday night to final preparations made it clear to me that what happened on Sunday morning was really important, even if I couldn’t always understand the content.

5. My Dad is a Hunter

  • When I was 7 my dad started teaching me to hunt deer, rabbits and squirrels, and we would nail the tails of slain squirrels to a tree near the house even though mom didn’t really like it. I loved showing my friends.
  • Once while driving to my grandparents house I asked my dad how many kills he had made in the surrounding forest. He said it was more than he could remember.
  • When I was 10 we went on a hunt and accidentally bumped a tree with a huge nest of hornets. While we were running I was stung twice, and was starting to get scarred until I heard my dad laughing as we fled down a hill for our lives. We were pursued all the way to our truck. With a smile on his face he assured me that they could have killed us. To this day it is one of my favorite moments with my dad, laughing in the face of death.

6. My Dad was Present

  • I love stories of Daniel Boone but my dad is the one who taught me to walk quietly through the woods wielding weapons and taking wild game.
  • I loved watching Michael Jordan as a kid, but my dad is the one who taught me to shoot a jump shot.
  • I loved watching Nolan Ryan as a kid, but my dad taught me how to throw a baseball.
  • I love Pastor Charles Spurgeon but my dad was the first Pastor to teach me about Jesus and he also baptized me.
  • I love my Father in Heaven, and I have had the increasingly rare privilege of learning about Him from a good earthly father.

My dad was the best man in my wedding because he is the best man that I know.

Happy Father’s Day!