Living out your faith in your daily life has an immense impact on your children and grandchildren.

I can close my eyes and almost be there, the warm salty air on my skin and hearing the waves crashing, Surf City, North Carolina. Surf City is the place where my family and I went on vacation each year. Not just my immediate family, but my entire family would go and stay at the same house, The Salty Dog, right on the ocean. My grandfather, Pa, as us kids called him, was the one who would set it up each year.

Pa, Granny Bink, aunts, uncles, cousins, mom, dad, and sister would pack up and head to the beach. There were eight of us cousins and my fondest memories of them are from the beach. This time of year I can’t help but think about our times together in Surf City. My memories are overwhelming at times. I’m taken back to when we would scour the beach for shark teeth, fish together on the pier, and play in the sand. I wish that I could turn back time and be there once again, all together.

Pa was our family rock. He made my childhood shine with love. I now know just how blessed I was to have a fabulous grandfather. He made all of us feel special and showed us how much he loved his family. Pa was our rock when tragedy struck our family. When I was ten years old my cousin Mikey was killed in a car accident. It was Pa who took all the grandkids to get ice cream after the long day for Mikey at the funeral home. Pa was there to help us cope with our loss. Only then we didn’t know that our time with Pa was short as well. Pa died a year after Mikey.

Never again did we go back to Surf City. It was just too hard for our family to return without Pa. All I have are my memories and I still grip them tightly today. The Salty Dog is now gone too. It was destroyed from a hurricane years ago. But what’s not gone are my memories, and how thankful I am for the times I got to share with my family at the beach.

Studying Proverbs I ran across 13:22 and it begins with, “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children…” I can’t help but think of Pa, and how he left us an inheritance that is full of love. Pa embraced his family with so much love it has overflowed into my life and I hope into my daughters lives. Today I thank God for all of my wonderful memories.

This experience has taught me the importance of male faith mentors. Fathers and Grandfathers, your example of living out your faith in your daily life has an immense impact on your children and grandchildren. This Father’s Day, let your faith shine, in the surf, in the sun, all the time.

About the Author

Ashley DeFrancisco

Ashley has a Master’s Degree in Education, with experience teaching 6th grade and tutoring troubled kids at a group home. Ashley and her husband, Jamie, have been married for fifteen years and have three daughters – Lacy (11), Emmy (5), and Libby (2). They love being in the Word at Berean and don’t want to miss church! They all enjoy outdoor activities, including feeding the birds in their yard and going on nature hikes. Ashley also very much enjoys Bible journaling, which is something she would like to introduce to the women at Berean. She has also created deeply-inspiring activities for Prayer Walks, or Journeys.

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