On This Father’s Day, Words To Live By From My Dad…

I was very fortunate to have had a close relationship with my dad. He was a Dutch immigrant who came to this country right after WWII. He and my mom had a wonderful marriage of 46 years. As a couple and as individuals, they have both been great role models for my sisters and me.

Being the only boy in a family of 5 children, I had the advantage of my dad’s full attention when we did ‘guy stuff’ together. Throughout his life, my dad was always known for his strong character and great integrity. He was a gentleman and a truly gentle man. Somehow, he was able to command respect and obedience in our family without raising his voice (an accomplishment that I have failed to replicate).
I learned a lot from my dad, mostly through his example. There is one specific piece of advice, however, that I have carried through the years in a special way. I received it when I was 18 years old living in Germany while serving in the Army. As a Christmas present, my dad gave me a little book titled As A Man Thinketh by James Allen. On the inside cover, my dad wrote his words of advice which I have treasured ever since. He wrote “Be the master of your mind and your life will be good and meaningful.” His advice and the principles contained in this book have been (and continue to be) a consistent and motivating influence in my life.
Year after year I come back to this little book, and to my dad’s words. It always seems to inspire me to keep working towards the ideals they represent. Also, reading my dad’s handwriting brings a clear picture of him into my mind which gives me comfort and encouragement. My dad has been gone for many years now, and I still miss him. Yet I am proud to carry so much of him with me as I live my own life. I truly believe in his advice and in the principles contained in this little book.
I only hope that I can live in such a way that would make my dad proud, and that I can pass his advice on to my own children in a way that helps them have a life that is “good and meaningful.”

Happy Father’s Day
In Loving Memory Of My Dad
Frederick (Friedjof) Johannus Christie Janssen
April 12, 1922 Apeldoorn, Netherlands
March 31, 1991 Bakersfield, California

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