Ephesians 6:4. “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.”❤
Difficult. When a mind pursues too much, charges ahead to worlds unknown, a calming force, a quiet voice, or a firm hug is needed. The stress of a father not long for this earth creates a vacuum of security as the known forges into the unknown and momentarily produces fear that a man will love and provide and be in my corner as my dad has always been. He has been that one man in life could truly count on, to love me unconditionally and I fight not in letting him go, for heaven is where he will be and deserves that happiness with Jesus. It is fear that I feel. I realized that tonight when I was mistakenly fearing something I really was not. Momentary confusion took over me and I realize I have absolutely no fear of that situation. I fear loosing my support system and that no one will be left who knows and loves me so well. I realize the ridiculousness of that but feelings often do not meet logic in the moment they fly off their perch. I am afraid that those who love me will only do so if I don’t screw up, which I am bound to do. I rather specialize at it lately. I fear there will be one less person to pray for me. I fear my standard of the perfect man will be lessoned or softened in time to lose some of the truth. I am afraid to be alone. Crazy, irrational fears like a runaway train pushing me farther down the irrational track. So stress was holding my mind hostage and fear was making feelings I don’t remember ever acknowledging to a living soul pour out of me onto this paper to try to make sense of them. Sense is an important word. Truth more so. And there is the heart of it. My wise best friend and unofficial therapist and authorized face smacker if needs be let me have my crazy in a nutshell. She spoke truth of who I am in Christ. She spoke of peace and beauty and joy and distraction and to remember who I am to combat these illogical fears. God chose wisely in my best friend. And along the way, I am sorry to have thought too hard about other things that were not the cruxt of the matter. I may have hurt or annoyed or frightened someone and for that I beg forgiveness and if not highest thanks for patience. I am figuring out all this as I go and need to rely more on my best friend to be my voice of calm and realism and truth that daddy was for me and can’t be now. “Tonny?” Was sometimes all it took and the tone of his voice calmed my spirit and stopped my runaway train thinking and all was well again and I was back, joking, helping, serving, making music, working, doing art, whatever it was, I was back on, back to normal. So, I begin again tomorrow with new reflections and truth streaming in where doubt and fear were, and should I soon need a real friend to hold me and calm me and say “Tonny?”, I trust God to provide that person who loves Him and maybe even me enough to help this little girl who can soar again with the right support and encouragement and a few hugs too. And I trust God now enough to hand down the baton from Daddy as main support person of my life to a next generation of support and love for me. Maybe He already has. Runaway train, you are confined to truth tracks.
This concept, I produced to my overactive brain by a good friend, has been entertaining me all day. There is a truth to love and life that it is a moving force, maybe some breathing moments during brief stops or during malfunctions, but that the train is up again in no time, running, moving forward. Watching a horrible movie recently about such a train that is in perpetual motion gave me the idea. It continues on, may loop back on itself but keeps running. You cannot exert enough force to stop the train. You are powerless. You can only ride the train. Love moves forward. Life moves forward. There is a continuation of these things that cannot be ceased. Motion, movement, nature is wild with them! There is rhythm, body, life to all of life. Everything can be to aced back to God and He made things move. If you stand still on the quietest day, the wind blows, the birds fly, the worms dig under your feet, the ants forage, the water moves with the tides, the fish swim and jump, there is motion, movement. Things cannot help but move. Trains have windows where you can look back at what was left behind. You can take it with you for a time but eventually you have to let what cannot go on with the living go to rest and stop moving while what is alive continues on. The burden of that not in motion cannot be tolerated at the level of movement of the living. So what moves us in our hearts and souls is with us, still in motion with us wherever we go. We do not leave our hearts and souls, they are always with us, always in motion with us. Why we cannot stop loving who we love, being moved by who moves us, moving toward greater togetherness, greater union. It is impossible to deter. Unless you ask the Conductor. The Conductor commands the train. He can help compartmentalize and help catch the tears that flow upon the loss. Or He can encourage the tightness of the bond and reunite those who started separate but should have been together. The thing is there is hope either way. But the Conductor knows which you need.
When you want a steak, often any old steak will do, but sometimes you want the best. Then you order prime rib. And you get that delicious flavor that tells you, “Yes, you just paid way too much precious money for any red meat but it was worth every penny.” When I ponder parenting my two precious children, I want to be a prime parent. I want to be the best parent God ever made. Why? Because my kids are worth it? Well, that’s not it because every child is worth millions because God made and loves them and they reflect His awesomeness. Is it because my kids are better than any other kids? Nope, I am not that naive. They sure are good when I’m watching but time will tell what they end up doing when my back is turned. I want to be a prime parent for the same reason I want to mow the lawn excellently or cut my kids hair wonderfully or teach excellently. The reason is that I am working for the Lord and not anyone else whenever I do anything. If I’m called to take out the trash, I want to do it with all my heart. If I’m called to trim trees, I will strive to be the best tree trimmer. If I am given the task of rearing my children, I want to do it excellently. What does that look like? Probably not what you’d expect because every child is different and each one will rise to his or her own potential for their own motivation based on their own love language. Prime parents do not choose favorites but they choose paths for their kids to go down that suit them and their needs, drives and passions. And the whole while, prime parents teach all their children heavy doses of Biblical teaching based on love and prayers and hugs and kisses. Prime parents also don’t pamper but teach, don’t push but encourage, don’t criticize but instruct, don’t nag but are firm, don’t let their children rule the house but do make them feel important. I want to be a great parent because God is worth it.