In the spirit of Christmas, I'd like to thank God for the gift He gave me-my earthly father, Wilmer W. Carter.
My father was the type of person who enjoyed gaining wisdom. He used to always tell me, "Above all they getting, get wisdom," or something like that. He constantly read books by all kinds of authors and knew the Bible inside and out.
When I was little, instead of playing sports and other physical activities, we would memorize all the dinosaurs, animals and sea creatures in the encyclopedia. He would take me to the Natural History Museum and the Page C. Scott Museum almost every other weekend.
My father really nurtured a spirit of curiosity and love for exploration during my youth. He wanted me to be wise and to always think about my actions. He never hindered me in my imagination or aspirations; he always encouraged me.
My father didn't boast or lecture me on how to be a man. Instead, he showed by example in the way he took care of us. He took me, my sisters, and my mother to school, college, and work almost every day without complaining.
On top of all of this, he bought the groceries, cooked, cleaned up the yard, front and back, took us to medical appointments, hairdressers, the mall, toy stores, making midnight runs to chicken joints across L.A. You name it and my father did it. And he did it with a loving heart.
And he always gave sound and wise advice. My father would lay it down on the line, just as he saw it...and would follow with some scripture from the Bible. He didn't want any of us to be lead astray or taken advantage of by anyone, because he cared.
My father passed away June of 2004 but he's still with me. I hear him in my laugh nowadays, I feel him whenever I give money to the struggling person on the street as he often did, I feel like him when I take my sister to appointments, or even when I argue with mama.
There is none nor will there ever be a man quite like my father. He was a special man. A special gift I was given by my heavenly Father, because He loved me so much.
Thank you, God, for my gift. Thank you.