Hip and Thigh: Smiting Theological Philistines with a Great Slaughter. Judges 15:8

Monday, July 28, 2008

Testing your Fatherly Devotion

My wife insisted that I mention this video...

It was sent to us by a friend in one of those "forward this to as many people as you know" style emails. I tend to roll my eyes when I see them pop into my inbox, but this one captured my attention.

The original email said this:

A son asked his father, 'Dad, will you take part in a marathon with me?' The father who, despite having a heart condition, says 'Yes'. They went on to complete the marathon together.

Father and son went on to join other marathons, the father always saying 'Yes' to his son's request of going through the race together.

One day the son asked his father, "Dad, let's join the Ironman together!" His father said "Yes"

For those who don't know, Ironman is the toughest triathlon ever. The race encompasses three endurance events of a 2.4 mile (3.86 kilometer) ocean swim, followed by a 112 miles (180.2 kilometer)bike ride, ending with a 26.2 miles (42 kilometers) marathon along the coast of the coast of the Big Island. Father and son went on to finish the race together.

The impression you get is that this was maybe a once or twice thing for the father and son, but I did a search on their name, Team Hoyt, and came up with a website for a foundation, meant to help children with physical and mental handicaps transition into the "normal" life we all take for granted. The pair are Dick (the father) and Rick (the son) Hoyt. The website gives much more background to this father and son team. Dick Hoyt has been competing in races and marathons like this with his son, Rick, since the 70s! Unbelievable.

More to the point of unbelievable is the fact that Dick has to tow his son in a boat to complete the 12 mile swim of the Ironman competitions. Swimming 12 miles with dead weight.

The video being featured on "God Tube" as sort of a Christian video implies the Hoyt's are believers, but I didn't find anything on their site to suggest they are. They very well could be as far as I know. What I do see is a father's devotion that should be a challenge to all fathers as they raise their children.



Blogger Steve said...

This video hits me right in the gut every time I watch it.

8:19 AM, July 30, 2008  
Blogger Daniel said...

According to this "Baptist Press" article "both Rick and Dick are dedicated Christians, always willing to share their beliefs."

My gut reaction to this unqualified assertion is, rather cautious (at best).

See, I am reminded of VeggieTales. You know, those lovable animated vegetables that sing those catchy tunes, and re-invent OT stories with vegetables and whatnot to "soften the blow" as it were. They quote an OT verse at the end of the show - but never, ever mention Jesus, sin, or redemption? I say, I am reminded of VeggieTales because like VeggieTales I expect the Lord and our faith to be front and center of everything we do; and perhaps if we are immature, at least off on the side somewhere - but what I do not expect is a remarkable, conspicuous absence of ANY reference to our Lord and Savior, or the faith, or the gospel - I say, the absence of such things in a life where such things are central or at the very least, where such things are present, cannot happen (in my estimation) by accident or oversight - but are neglected by design; which raises some questions at the very least.

Which is only to remark that if this really is a testimony to what faith can bring us through, it is surprising that the Hoyt foundation is so silent on the matter. I should expect that rather than accept glory for himself (what a great dad!), He would want to proclaim from the rooftops how Christ strengthened him to the task. As it sits, all I see is a dad who really loves his son, which while a wonderful picture of God's love for Christ, and by extension for us - is by no means an exclusively Christian sentiment - for I don't doubt that atheist fathers have profound affection for their own children too.

12:00 PM, July 30, 2008  

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