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Lori Beth Crawford



It’s All Their Fault

The pinnacle of bad parenting!

Speech I gave at my father’s retirement celebration.

It’s impossible to live for any length of time and not discover some issue in yourself that needs to be worked out. And in my thirty years, I’ve discovered plenty. But alas, therapy is expensive. Besides, I already know what’s wrong me. Two words. My Parents. Every last bit of it. Is all their fault.

It never stops amazing me when I hear people say how brave it was for me to move to L.A. The big city. But it’s just another place. My parents showed me that when they dragged me along on church trip after trip. Alderson, West Virginia; Gary, Indiana; Washington, D.C. Do you know that I’d been to nearly twenty states by the time I was five? Way too young to drive. So, that just leaves them two. They’re responsible for showing me that when God is riding shotgun, there is nothing to fear.

Something else that’s their fault…I can’t say no to more responsibility even if I’m already working a thirty-hour day. They never did. Whenever anybody needed anything, they only had to ask. No matter how overwhelmed or tired they were, they’d always wrangle a way to help out. Whether it be cooking for unexpected guests, shipping spiced nuts across the country so someone else can make a profit or staying on the phone for hours to talk someone off the ledge, they would do it cheerfully and faithfully. So thanks a lot. That particular fault is really annoying. Especially when I’m so tired I’m cross-eyed. But! I’ve figured out their little secret. They just do their best and let God handle the rest. They think they slick don’t they? Uh huh.

Wanna know something really irritating? I can’t just settle for any old job. Oh no. I’ve got to build a career I love. And yeah, that’s their fault, too. After all, that’s what they did. Daddy retired from Pastoring a church in 2004. He didn’t even last six months before he ended up as interim pastor at another church. I wanna use my talents to be a blessing to others just like they have. After all, that’s why God blessed us with them in the first place, right? So nope, I just can’t settle. Thankyouverymuch.

And speaking of settling…Daddy set an awfully high standard for any man I allow in my life. I see how much he’s loved and cherished Mom for some forty odd years. And I’ll be doggone if I settle for anything less. So thanks, Dad. Really ‘preciate that one.

Yeah, and another thing that’s their fault…I can’t just align myself with anyone off the street. The people who surround me have to be about something. Just like the people they’ve always kept around them. Be it the Just Us Club or the Preacher/Fishing Buddies who were always hanging around. Now, this ain’t the easiest thing to do in La La Land. Yet, God has blessed me with an extraordinary circle of friends. Just like He did for them.

But finally, the biggest thing that I hold them responsible for…And they really can’t deny this one. The rest have plausible deniability. But not this. Not the fact that I know God. I know of His love. His grace, His peace, His protection, His joy, His power, His mercy, His guidance, His strength. And His healing. For that, I blame them completely.

And I love them for it. So much. Thank you, Mom and Dad. Everybody should have parents as bad as you two.

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