Sunday, June 18, 2006

Father's Day

On this special day when we all say thanks to God for our fathers, I would like to honor my own. Paul Burleson was the best man in my wedding and continues to this day to be the man I most admire.

For nearly 50 years he has preached the gospel in small churches and mega-churches around the country. His Pastors and Wives Conferences have helped hundreds of couples better their marriages, ministries and families. I constantly run into pastors who tell me my father has helped them immensely in their walk with Christ. He has taught me everything I know theologically, and more importantly, he has modeled for me what I want to be like spiritually and personally.

He has been personal friends with Adrian Rogers, Jack Taylor, Ron Dunn, Peter Lord, John Blanchard, and a host of other prominent pastors, but the friendships he developed in the 70's when he pastored hundreds of Seminary students while at Southcliff Baptist Church are the relationships that continue to this day all over the world.

Probably the greatest compliment I could pay my father is that the older he gets, the better he gets. He knows how to relate to all generations. My dad and mom enjoy their relationship with each other more today than they ever have. They both are a testimony to Rachelle and me that the best days of our lives are yet ahead!

On this Father's Day I say thanks to God for my own father. And if you would like to get to know him better, check out his blog.

I can hardly believe it --- my father blogs :).

Happy Father's Day Dad!




Paul/Mary Burleson said...

What a nice tribute to Dad.

I called him this morning and he asked me if I had read your blog, and I replied, not yet. He said, I'm sitting here tearing up. We hung up so I could read your blog. I called Paul right back and said I see why. He was very moved by your post.

I especially enjoyed your comment about his blogging. He's got a new spring in his step because he's so excited about blogging and the bloggers he's met.

We're both appreciative of your love, acceptance, and forgiveness of us for our mistakes. Thanks.

And Happy Fathers' Day to you. You're a great Dad to four of our grandchildren.

Bob Cleveland said...


I was the poster child for Daddy's Boys. My first-ever memory is crying because my Dad took a picture of me with my Mom .. with his new Kodak box camera .. after she'd taken a picture of my older brother with my Dad.

He wasn't a Christian until much later in life. I suppose one of my most heart-warming accomplishments was Dad being proud of me after early disappointments. And I think our church activities and witness before them had a part of their eventually getting into church, and becoming believers.

One memory is burned into my mind. It happened when my older son walked the aisle to get his HS diploma. I was so very proud of him, and then I thought that my Dad must have felt the same way, 33 years earlier. The thought that I'd made him feel pretty good was immensely pleasing.

Dad died 18 years ago. He'd suffered some mild dementia, principally mild short-term memory problems. But he's still with me, in a way, every week.

When I was a kid, we had a Zenith Trans-Oceanic console radio. On Friday and Saturday nights, we'd turn the dining room chairs to face the radio, and we'd listen to the Friday Night Fights, Gangbusters, Racket Squad, and all the rest. Dad would have a briefcase of paperwork, and I'd sit by his feet, drawing pictures on paper on the floor.

When I had my knee replaced, I told them I wanted to be able to sit cross-legged on the floor. They said that wasn't likely and asked why. I told the surgeon and therapist that I sit on the floor in our prayer meetings; it had occurred to me that was how I sat at my Daddy's feet when I was a little kid, and I still do that, in the prayer meeting.

Count your blessings, Wade. You have the feet of two Daddies at which to sit.

Ken said...

Wade , As one who grew up at Southcliff and who atended his men's seminar, I can amen what you say. His men's seminar really prepared me with principles from the scriptures that have helped me so much in my marriage 20 years later to the present day. Also your dad taught & challenged me to not simply attend church but to move forward in my Christian walk seeking a deeper walk with Jesus.

Thanks PB !

Ken McLemore

scripturesearcher said...

A deserving tribute to your Dad from a son who has learned well.

With a little help from his barber your Dad could be made to favor Frances Schaeffer.

Wish you could have known your unique maternal grandfather named Fred Cherry. He, too, was a great man of God - a true misfit in our pagan society.

Anonymous said...

Here at Emmanuel we have mixed emotions when you are on vacation and out of the pulpit. On the one hand we miss you but on the other hand we look forward to having your father, Paul Burleson, preach. By the way, we like his new photo.

He tried out a new series on us this morning about faith. He used Hebrews 11:12—“without faith it is impossible to please God.” It made us wonder why we strive so hard to replace that word “faith” with our vain works.

Besides paying tribute to your father we would also like to comment on your truly better half. She is as beautiful on the inside as the outside. Even though she is wise and beautiful, her glory is that she “knows the Lord” (Jeremiah 9:24.)

It was our privilege as messengers from your church to be represented by you and Rachelle at the Southern Baptist Convention.

And there weren't many dull moments.

J & M Loewen

Anonymous said...


Based upon a previous comment I glean that evidently Fred Cherry is in your ancenstry.

I am from Downey CA which is a suburb of Los Angeles. A girl I knew at Downey High invited me to the First Southern Baptist Church in Downey. She had moved to Downey a couple of years previously from Midwest City OK. While I was there I accepted Christ as a result of Fred Cherry's preaching at a revival service. As I recall, Fred Cherry was a firebrand lay preacher from Edmund OK so he must be the same Fred Cherry.

Several years later at the Downey Baptist Chruch I met Donna and we were married there in February 1965.

Donna just gave me a watch for Father's Day.

The only Fred Cherry sermon I remember is "Telephone Pole Religion": "You can say, 'I'm OK as I am, I havn't done any really bad stuff so I think God will let me into the pearly gates'. Well, that telephone pole over there hasn't done any bad stuff either but it is not going to heaven".

We lived in Silicon Valley from 1965 to 2004 and moved here to OKC after retirement.

I was a software engineer working mostly on embedded microcode for high end disk storage sub-systems and Donna was a librarian at a Christian School.

Roger Simpson
Oklahoma City OK

Larry Thompson said...

We used to leave Sunday School on occasion at Travis Ave and go over to South Cliff to hear your dad preach. It was always a spiritual boost.

Anonymous said...

I truly enjoyed meeting your father last week, Wade. It was such a blessing to me to see you two together and to see him supporting you. That spoke volumes. Many men who have grown sons and are as young and energetic as your Dad feel the need to compete with their sons, put them down, and push themselves up. It was obvious that your Dad is comfortable with who is and is proud of you. He reminded me of my own father, of whom I love deeply.

Mike said...

John and Mona,
Greeting from Mike Jackson, son of Boyd and Karen Jackson. We miss Emmanuel but serving the Lord where we are at. Blessing.

Anonymous said...

I agree. Your father impacted me greatly, even honoring me by asking me to follow him at Broken Arrow. God had another assignment in mind for me then, but I always wonder "what if?" I admire you too Wade. Keep on keeping on The anointing of God is all over you my friend!

Marty Duren said...

I'm still not sure he's actually your maybe. He just doesn't look old enough to be your Dad.

Spurgeon 2005 said...

Wade, that is a great tribute to your Dad. Bro. Paul was our pastor for three years while we were at SWBTS. In fact Rhetta and I joined his first Sunday there as pastor. His impact on my life and ministry was as great as my time in class at SWBTS. I cannot express the depth of my appreciation for your Dad.

Bill Haynes