Mad for…John

Let us reflect gratitude for fathers. Father is ever willing to sacrifice his own comfort for that of his children. Daily he toils to provide the necessities of life, never complaining, ever concerned for the well-being of his family. This love for children, this desire to see them well and happy, is a constant in a time of change. –Thomas Monson

If ever your car has broken down on the side of the road, the guy you need to be hoping will pass by soon is the man pictured above, John Zimmerman. I’m not kidding. He can’t help himself. He’s just a generous everyday hero to his core. This jovial and amiable jack-of-all trades and consummate “good Samaritan” is a father of six grown children (John Ryan, Katie, Michael, Mary, Sarah and Joseph) and the grandfather of an ever growing brood of cuties. He’s pictured here with another stunningly beautiful soul, his wife Tina.

As we inch closer to Father’s Day this weekend, I find myself inspired to celebrate a few of the great men among us! That certainly includes my friend, JZ. I can’t really do him justice in a few paragraphs. He’s just flat out a lover of Christ. Next to the phrase “salt of the earth” is where I think his photo belongs. He’s a man who focuses on the positive and trust me when I tell you that if he is laughing, soon you will be doing the same! His authentic sense of humor as well as his big heart are impossible to miss. That laugh of his is infectious and his smile is like sunshine! I’m sure his life is not without plenty of stress, but you’d never know it from the warm greeting you get from John each time you see him!

I read once that every father should remember one day his child will follow his example rather than his advice. If that’s true, then John’s kids are in excellent shape. Their lives will be filled with faith and fun! This man has served on countless mission trips, he’s coached many young people in youth sports, he’s served his parish, St. Louis de Montfort, in virtually every way conceivable. He’s prayerful, often encouraging others in his path to step up their faith life too. He’s hard-working, uncomplicated, non-judgmental– and filled with joy. He knows imperfections are merely an invitation for God’s grace to go to work in us all.

John is as proud a parent as I know. He loves to watch his family shine! The truth is, he finds great happiness in the successes of everyone around him. He’s a “the more, the merrier” kind of guy. I think John lives a lot like Jesus, if I’m honest. He loves like the Lord wants us to love. He’s an inspiring witness of what fatherhood is meant to look like and a light to all in his path. THANK YOU, JOHN, for being the fact of Christ to so many of us! I hope you enjoy a very HAPPY FATHER’S DAY this weekend!