“I can’t believe they’re letting us take him home. They don’t even know us!” My words to Seth as we drove home from the hospital with our firstborn emanated from a humble sensibility that waned much sooner than it should’ve .
The responsibility to train them in the way they should go is beyond our ability. Did it really take seven years to know that? Did it require moving across the world to be so violently confronted with the need for God’s grace in parenting…in everything? I don’t know; blessedly the lesson keeps repeating. As they grow and learn I grasp more clearly what is at stake. Will my children choose to suffer with Christ, knowing His glory and redemption are, no contest, worth the risk of pain, loneliness, disappointment, rejection, etc?
Ronnie Stevens, towering rhetorician for the gospel, on The Faithful Life Defined. Listen to the whole thing; it’s only 35 minutes long. But if a tornado is coming, skip to 27 minutes in and listen for 3 minutes. “…even the presence of Jesus Himself, teaching and modeling, didn’t close the gap between their carnality and what God wanted unless the Spirit came…”
I prayed for them today. God knows the burden, and He granted me the time and the will. Help Andy to grasp his need for Your grace. Send Your Spirit to work in his heart. A couple chapters of First Chronicles later and the big seven year old bounded in the front door from school. He sat down on the couch next to me, and I began to share with as much winsome excitement as I could, “Andy, guess what!? I was just reading about how cool it was that Davi-” ( b l a h b l a h b l a h ) “Mom, where’s my Bible? Oh! I know!” He runs off to grab it and returns. He has no interest in David right now, only in finding my page number in his Bible. I explain, “Well, we have different fonts and translations…you have to look at the table of contents to fin- ( b l a h b l a h ) “Okay…(searching for First Chronicles)…Oh, look! Ezra!” He has a friend named Ezra. He flips many pages to the book of Ezra and starts reading chapter one. Daisy hears him, runs and grabs her Bible, sits down on my other side and picks up in Matthew chapter one.
(By the way, Andy does not say, “blah blah blah” to me. Not yet anyway.)
Halfway through the first chapter of Ezra Andy says, “I want to read one chapter everyday.” They are both simultaneously reading aloud to me from Matthew and Ezra, politely interrupting each other for help with big words like, Sheshbazzar and myrrh. I look up at my Father in the middle of their voices and see
His folded, everlasting arms.
He is chuckling…
that I didn’t know how delighted He would be to bless me today with their interest and confirm to me again not only that He hears me, but that He loves them.
Not worried about their souls for tomorrow, because tomorrow isn’t real.