Life Lessons as a Dad - Part 3
Another idea that has "worked" well for me as a dad has been to gently invite and seek to persuade my kids, from very early ages, to adopt, internalize and own for themselves, the philosophy that Terri and I have jointly embraced about life, love, faith and family. It was our attempt to create a "team" approach to being in this world together. This value is grounded in a deep respect for each individual in our family as a beloved creation of the Heavenly Father - no matter what might be their age or stage of maturity. As parents, we always believed that they were God's first, and simply entrusted to us to nurture and guide for a few years. After which time, they would be launched into adulthood, though still members of our family. But they would be prepared to live with us and others as mature peers in many respects.
One of the ways that I began to introduce them to living together as a "team" was to tell them my beliefs, based in my study of Scripture and experience with God Himself. I don't believe that we ultimately come to know ourselves and find our bearings in life and human relations, unless we first let the mystery of God reduce us to wonder, awe and worship. So I exposed them to the biblical concepts of God that "blew my mind" in order to intentionally blow theirs too! Things like: His eternal nature, His infinitude, His sovereignty, His omnipresence, His omnipotence, His omniscience, His holiness, His justice, His humility, His love for all His creation, His choice to create "others" and make room for them in His universe, His special love and purpose for human beings, angels and demons, fulfilled biblical prophecies, The Trinity, His incarnation in Jesus of Nazareth, The Life, The Miracles, The Death, The Resurrection and The Ascension of Jesus, The new birth, The indwelling of the Holy Spirit and more. (a little overwhelming to our finite minds--don't you think!) As followers of Jesus, we have the greatest mysteries of the universe to offer to soothe and comfort the wounded and earthbound soul of our broken world.
This has gotten too long, so I'll have to continue in the next post!