Sunday, January 24, 2010

faith challenged by my 2 year old

moments with dutch are becoming better and better. every now and then he will exert this charge of energy that he has never exhibited before. i am amazed at some of the things he is capable of doing on his own. he is really good at identifying all kinds of trucks, from trash trucks to tankers. his vocabulary is expanding rapidly and it is becoming so much easier to communicate with him. i wish they came out of the womb able to communicate effectively. i mean, at least at a 2 year old level that would be just as good and i would be satisfied. i do think it is a strategy or a plan designed by the great developer of mankind that babies are incapable of conveying what it is they want. it requires the parents to invest not just hands, money, or time, but ears, eyes, and patience, which are among the most underrated attributes amongst parents in their rearing of children. i am certainly not the cream of the crop. i owe most, if not all, to my wonderful wife. liz has invested much and selflessly given all the while maintaining control over her frustration at a child who will not just shut up and go to sleep already (note: that is my description of what is going on and NOT endorsed by liz).

i secretly have my vested interest in my children. there are certain things i will not hold back in revealing to them. this conviction is a direct response of the understanding of the continual fallen state if the hebrews. reading the older testament i see the failure in the parents to teach and instruct their young in the ways of the lord. this will not be the case amongst my family. the most common argument against this approach to parenting is understood in the modern culture and it is commonly expressed or manifested in the form of idolatry. the parent in this model allows the child to develop their own understanding of the world which is formed from their selfishness. the god-given responsibility of the parent is to steward the child in a direction which brings out convictions upon the child that are current with the original state of the created order. yes, this original state of the created order will be impossible to attain this side of the grave, however, the god of this design has not changed despite his creation's choices. the pursuit of the god of this created order has a very strict definition. bottom line, i am not god, you are not god, so to allow a sinful and selfish soul to pursue a worldview and or life however they see fit is NOT an approach that will, in the end, prove to be beneficial for that child.

that said i have an amazing and challenging experience to share with you. i had recently purchased some jeans from urban outfitters which i did not originally try on. i got home only to realize i have thunder thighs and would not feel comfortable with everyone able to see all of my business. as much as i am proud of my god who created me, i don't believe it is a good witness for me. you can do it all you want, it doesn't bother me for you to wear jeans that are fastened to your flesh. for me it proves to be too uncomfortable. i then made the decision that i needed to return them to the store, or just exchange them for a bigger pair around the waist. tonight, was the perfect night. i would get off work around 7, run home grab the jeans, and go to dallas. at work i thought to myself that it would be cool to bring dutch along. i mean, we are not going to be out late and we would be home in time for his bedtime. i had texted liz to have him ready for me to just swing by and pick him up. the moment i got home from work and opened the door his greeting words were, "go dallas with daddy." liz told me he had been saying it all night after she told him i wanted to go with him. ahhhhhh, it melted my heart. we ventured out to dallas and upon arrival at mockingbird station i knew we would have to park in the parking garage. we parked and got out and made our way onto the elevator. now, dutch always wants liz or i to carry him when we get on moving things like this. i had no problem with holding him, there were about 10 strangers in the elevator with us so this was understood that i wanted him close. so we are in the elevator and of course everyone is absolutely quiet, when all of a sudden dutch opens his mouth and says rather loudly, "praise jesus!" my eyes got a little big as i knew arabic people, which we had with us in the elevator, are not commonly believers in yeshua, at least not in the praising him sense. at this moment i felt my faith challenged by my 2 year old son. i then felt a sense of pride rise up in me as i looked at him and said amen. i walked away not really thinking anything of it. i am sitting here now, however, thinking about how proud he made me at that moment.

if you are like me then you really do want your level of faith to be greatly surpassed by your offspring. i think inside of me the greatest comfort of my existence will be to see my son walking in such a way where he is completely oblivious to the desensitizing of the flesh and that his faith is not sobered by our idolatrous culture. i want him constantly living with the hope of the gospel on the forefront of his mind while portraying a life of grace to every individual he encounters. wow, what a moment, i hope it is not the last i know with this little giant man of god.