Based on testimony from some of today's more sensational trials, you'd think that the popular thing is to blame your parents for the way you turned out as an adult. I guess I can do that, too.
From as far back as I can remember we were a religious family. I remember being taken to church at an early age, and being sent to Vacation Bible School. I think that was my mother's idea.
My impression of my father is that of being a spiritual seeker. He took us kids along on his spiritual journeys. After my 8th year, I grew up in the church. I don't think I really had a choice -- I went because we all went. My parents' faith was not just a Sunday thing, though, and they passed this devotion to God on to me.
What was the result? When I went through my teen years, I was filled with spiritual values. Thanks to the influence of my father, I was acutely aware of the need to have a right relationship with God, and to search for the true way to Him, not to just accept the easy or popular way. Due to my parents' influence, I've had a personal relationship with Jesus Christ for over 20 years. I've shared the Gospel on 3 continents.
I learned some "bad" things from them too. My father's outlook on life made me fairly tolerant of other faiths, which makes me too liberal for my fundamentalist friends. I have an understanding of the world and of other cultures that most of my peers don't have.
Yeah, I can blame them -- it was my parents who made me this way. Their example set the tone for my life. As a father myself who raised 4 kids, I hope my influence on mine could be like theirs on me.
My parents did very well. I thank God I had parents like them.