Friday, July 17, 2009

Fatherhood

I've been thinking a lot about this subject lately. I'm honestly not sure what got me started. It began before Father's Day. I suppose it's presence on the horizon was the trigger. Not really sure.
My father was in Virginia over Father's Day, so I didn't see him. That's OK, though, because that means he was with his granddaughter. I'm pretty sure her presence is more preferable to my parents than me right now:) I'm just fine with that. She is pretty sweet. More than that. Just darling, but then again, I'm prejudiced.

On Father's Day one of our elders at church shared a lot about fatherhood, more importantly, being a Christ-like father. That's a tall task. Many don't come anywhere close to measuring up. Others do quite well. It is NOT an easy job. I know that he's passionate about men and their relationship with their Heavenly Father. In turn, their relationships with their families are improved. I have a lot of respect for that because I feel the same desire to see women grow closer to their Maker and each other, mostly through their time in the Word.
After the sermon there was a response time. Father's were encouraged to ask for prayer, pray with their familes, pray by themselves, whatever they felt led to do. There was one particular guy that got up to go speak to his son who was sitting with the youth group. I don't know what was said. All I saw was a man walking toward his son with an "I'm on a mission" look on his face. He leaned over, spoke into his son's ear for just a bit, then hugged him and walked back to his seat. Obviously I'm not privy to what was said, but the message of love was still evident in the body language. It was also evident in the fact that after Dad sat down again, I looked toward the son to see him unashamedly wiping tears off his cheeks. His buddies were sitting near him, and there was not a hint of embarassment about the fact that he was crying because his Dad loves him. It was really beautiful. I wonder if anyone else got to notice it.

I've been reading a book with other women from our Bible study. I honestly can't say that I've been much of a reader lately, but there is one line in it that has stuck with me. It says, "...Jesus Himself pursued relationship with us so we could come to know and trust Him." We have been given free will. It is our choice to choose to become a disciple of Christ or not. He cannot make us. He can, however, doggedly pursue us. I realize that Jesus is not the portion of the trinity considered "The Father", but the point is still there. Discussing the theology is not important here. We were created with His desire being that we would choose to accept the gift of being adopted into His family with all the privileges and blessings included in the family trust. We have to make the choice and He pursues us relentlessly, doing everything in His might to draw us to Him, into a place of eternal security and earthly peace. That's an even more beautiful picture of the love of a Father, that he does not give up.

The final picture of fatherhood that is the most recent to present itself to me is this.
This is Lars. I know him as Alek, only because it's easier to say. He and his wife, Hanna, are from Sweden. We all worked together as nurses on the Africa Mercy. They are both lovely people. I thoroughly enjoyed their humor, kindess, and desire to show Christ's love to the patients and crew alike. Yay!!!!! They just had a son, Alek, Jr. I'm very happy for them, and I'm also happy for him to be born to the parents he's been blessed with.
Look at it again.....a little bigger. Take in the details.

Little Alek is bundled securely near his Daddy's heart. It's obviously a peaceful place to be. Notice he's sleeping without a care in the world. In the meantime Lars is protecting his son while proudly letting the whole world know that his son has arrived! The title of this photo on FB was titled "Fanfare for Alek Jr, our firstborn!" I just love it! I'm amazed that Alek is sleeping so soundly while that trumpet is blaring. That makes one think he must have heard it a time or two while he was in the womb as well. It's a song only for him, the shouts of the trumpet joined with the steady beating of Lars' heart.

When I asked Lars' permission to use this photo, he shared with me that Alek's arrival helped him understand just a bit more the love our Father feels for us. Since I'm not a parent, I can only imagine. The pride in this photo, though, is more than obvious. Just think. If he feels just a taste of what God feels for His children, how much more must our Father love us and feel pride in us. That says nothing of his desire to hold us close to His heart. Take some time to soak that up.

4 comments:

Mary said...

Beautiful post Cheryl.

Rosetta said...

I still check your blog..,I just don't always leave a comment...keep blogging, I enjoy reading your thoughts.

heather said...

That is an awesome picture and analogy. :)

the Provident Woman said...

That is so cute (the baby bundled with daddy).