RECOVERING THE GOOD PARTS

I was talking with a coworker earlier today about this whole whacky buying a bed situation.

“You know, children have a tendency to train our eyes to see the world in a different way,” he said. I couldn’t agree more.

The more I hang out with my kids, the more I’m convinced they know a few things that I don’t, or that I’ve forgotten. Somehow we grow up and lose our sense of imagination, excitement, and wonder. Somewhere along the line we adults “grew up” and got burned from helping someone. So we just sort of quit.

guitar BW pic

Lincoln learning a few chords…

But when we hang out with our kids, the side-effect is that we start crawling around and playing flashlight hide-and-go-seek again. We buy stuffed rabbit puppets and watch cartoons and buy ridiculous pink outfits. And the same is true with helping people. There is some sweet spot with a kid’s age- somewhere between them crying all the time and them getting sent to the principal’s office- where every kid has uniquely sweet moments. I’m convinced that I need to recover some of that.

So that’s why I’m doing my best trying to keep up with the documentation. My son is inevitably going to look back at the things he’s done in his life. When he looks back on this moment, I hope he can see himself as a kind person who does kind things. There are a lot of things Melissa and I wish for our kids. But if this moment became a self-fulfilling prophecy for Lincoln, we’d be the proudest parents alive.

The Scriptures use the word “Father” to describe God an awful lot. I have a friend who has a hard time making sense of that, because her father is so disinterested in her. Lincoln & Harper’s definition of the word “father” is going to be shaped largely by my actions. That’s a lot to live up to. It makes me really aware and anxious about my failures as a dad. But it also inspires me to try and reflect the kindness of God through my actions. I Hope that when my kids hear “God is like a father,” they’ll sort of get it.

The other reason this particular event is important to me is that I made a promise. I shook a hand. Even if that hand was a three year-old’s who would likely forget the next day, I feel like I should try my best to make good on it. I’ve broken small promises to my son before. One time I said I’d play trains with him on Saturday morning. But I’d stayed up so late Friday night that I just wanted to sleep in and let him veg-out in front of cartoons. I shudder to think that Lincoln’s trust in me is wearing thin when I do stuff like that.

Melissa and I made a resolution to become more responsible and dependable this year. Here’s to making good on that resolution…

Parents, I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. The older my kids get the more I realize how much my actions affects them. A wise man once said, “It’s easier to build strong boys than repair broken men.” Any advice on how to do that well is appreciated!

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