Sunday, January 2, 2011

"My Beloved Son" - My Article in the Southside Messenger

Spirit & Truth # 209
“My Dearly Loved Son”
By Rev. Greg Smith

            Having resolved this New Year to be more intentional about finding recreation (re-creation) time, this pastor took the week after Christmas to do just that.  Admittedly, my staycation (a vacation where you stay at home) wasn’t all recreation—my thirteen-year-old Lydia got a freshly painted bedroom out of the deal—but overall it’s been a great week.  While our three teenagers went on a fun trip with the church youth group, my wife and I took our eight-year-old so to a movie one day and to an indoor water park the next.  It was nice spending exclusive time with Daniel, as I don’t get the opportunity to spend one-on-one time with each of my kids individually, as much as I’d like.  

Today, armed with a pocket full of Christmas money and accompanied by my (gasp) man-sized, fifteen-year-old son, I went canoe-shopping in West Virginia.  Today was a day full of lessons.  For his part, Aaron learned a few things.  He learned that his dear old dad is secretly a wheeler-dealer, able to haggle a seller down to 3/5 of his original price.  He also learned that he can talk to his dad about absolutely anything—our eight-hour round-trip journey proved that true. 

I learned a lot today, too.  For instance, that I should measure the width of my roof-rack and get the breadth of the canoe from the seller before I make an eight-hour round-trip journey.  (A poor fit, we didn’t buy it, even for 3/5 of the original price.)  I also learned to appreciate my mannish son, able to lift heavy canoes on his broadening shoulders.  In addition, something occurred to me about my growing boy as we followed a total stranger I’d contacted through Craigslist, down lonely mountain roads to his back-woods cabin where nobody could hear us scream.  (At this point, I began to question my own fatherly wisdom.)  What occurred to me was that, should the unlikely horror-movie scene take place, my son had my back.  Yes, Aaron is growing up.  I invited him along with me just to help lift heavy things, but I learned a great lesson today—I can totally trust my son.

Reflecting on this brings to mind the heavenly Father’s words at Jesus’ baptism: "This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy (Matthew 3:17 NLT)."  It’s exciting, watching your children grow into maturity and realizing that you can trust them.  I wonder—does our Father take this kind of delight in us?  After all the effort He’s put into raising us, have we shown Him that He can trust us?  As I grow to maturity, I hope that I’ve learned that I can talk with my heavenly Father about absolutely anything.  I hope that takes delight in watching me grow.  And I hope that along the way I might earn His trust.

I hope the same for you.

(Here's a picture of the Pelican Bayou 160 I didn't buy today.)

1 comment:


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God Bless You, ~Ron