The Likeness of My Father.

When I awake, I will be satisfied with seeing your likeness. Psalm 17:15 (NIV)

My dad is 93. He’s fragile and ambulates just beyond a snail’s pace. But being so slow, he’s more attune to the beauty of his surroundings. In a world fraught with hurry and worry, that’s a blessed thing.

Recently, I had him lean in for a picture, pressed my cheek to his and raised my cell. “Selfie practice,” I said. 

He tipped his chin, smiled. 

Though evidence of his advanced age is unmistakable in his weak frame and sagging, crepey skin, his eyes hold glints of joy when he smiles.

An optimistic soul, serene and contemplative, gratitude is nearly always his first response to things. (So long as we didn’t put our feet on the dash board, speak unkindly to one another or grumble about compulsory church attendance)

Given that I’m his biological daughter, our shared DNA works in my favor. In former years he was stunningly handsome, (especially in his Navy uniform), traces of which can still be seen today.

Much of Dad’s features, including his tall stature, are reflected in mine. But beyond our physical similarities, he carries the likeness of Jesus in his expressions and overall demeanor. 

My mom saw Jesus in my father. I see Jesus in my father. Others see Jesus in my father.

What do others see in me?

Does it stop with those sculpted cheeks, thick brows, blonde hair, blue eyes and fair skin tone of his German heritage? Or do they, too, see Jesus?

Despite the unavoidable changes of time, is it evident that I’ve put my trust in God to accomplish what concerns me? (Psalm 138:8, NIV) Or is it hidden by wrinkles of worry?

No better time than now to bless a world in desperate need for the likeness of Jesus seen in the fruit of the Spirit—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control (Galatians 5:22-23, NIV)

How about you? Does this morning’s reflection bring you satisfaction? In your interactions with others, how clear is it that Jesus lives within?


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✏️ Two of my 2019 inspirational articles that were published in Refresh, Online Bible Study Magazine, are featured in this 40 short Bible studies compilation, The Power to Make a Difference Available on Amazon.


  1. Margaret says:

    Beautiful description of Daddy! What a blessing it is to be able to see Jesus in your earthly father. Thanks for sharing.

    • Mary Felkins says:

      Yes, I realize this more deeply as I’ve spent time here caring for his needs. So many lives have been touched by him. I do want to share in his likeness because it demonstrates the love of Jesus.

  2. Martha M. Mullins says:

    Your father is leaving a remarkable legacy! In the vicissitudes of aging as well as all the pressures of life, may we all reflect the goodness of Our Father in our demeanor, our trust and rest in Hi, the twinkle in our eyes, as he does. I know God is already blessing him, and you his family; may our lives also present the Kingdom of God wherever we are by the way we live in Him.

    • Mary Felkins says:

      That’s a beautiful prayer, Martha. I treasure your words and intimate walk with Jesus. Many lives have been (and continue to be) blessed by the reflection of the Lord in your demeanor and wisdom and heart of service.

  3. What a beautiful portrait of your father! And yes, I see his Christlikeness in you.

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