Sunday, April 1, 2007

Frightening thought...

My son has been saying something lately that is very frightening to me. In fact, I can't think of too much that scares me more. When we're doing things together, he often says, "Dada, I'm going to copy you. I'm gonna do it just like you." He's going to copy ME????

What a thought! I've never thought of myself as someone who should be copied. I am really flawed. But here's this little life that is looking at me, trying to figure out how to act in this world. I'm still trying to figure that out myself.

It reminds me that people who study such things say that kids get their ideas about who God is by watching their parents, especially their dads. If their father is warm, loving, and forgiving, they assume God is like that too. On the other hand, if dad is cold and aloof, or angry and violent, then that's how they see God.

My dad was gone. Totally. Saw him a handful of times growing up, but he was never a part of my life. And I have struggled my whole life with the idea that God (or anyone, for that matter) really loves me. I know in my head that I am loved by God. But somehow that knowledge hasn't seeped into my soul. So I sometimes wonder: am I loved? Am I lovable? It's not a great way to live. But it's the legacy that my father left to me.

I want to do better for my kids. I want my kids to see God as the One they can always turn to. The One who is always on their side. The One who doesn't tolerate bad behavior, but who is always ready to forgive. The One who you can always depend on, no matter how much you have goobered things.

It's a pretty tall order to model all those things for my kids. Thankfully, I can also be a model of how a flawed human being can still be loved and accepted by a good, loving God. Thank God for grace!

(Again, the picture has nothing to do with this post. But he sure is cute!)


wilkifam said...

Thanks for sharing those thoughts Richard. You are right about the picture, what a adorable kid!

Jennifer said...

Boy - is there anything heavier than the mantle of parenting God's little people? I realize more and more how desperate I am for mercy and grace!