As a father I would like to think that my children see me as someone they could come to with any kind of problem they had. In reality, it's the outside influences that can be much more powerful. So to have their trust and permission is extremely important!
About five years ago, my son came to me with something that he was having a very difficult time with. Okay, men have a tough enough time asking for directions. So he had my full attention!
As he began to try to explain what he was going through, I noticed at the end of every sentence, he took a deep breath, ran his fingers through his hair, then sharply exhaled. The stress level was evident, and over the top!
Over the years I have learned how crucial it is not only to listen to what is being said, but to also look at things like body language, emotion, and other signals to get a better idea of what is really going on.
Also, one of the things God has taught me is to get out of His way and ask, "Lord, what do you want him to hear, what do you want him to see, and what do you want him to know?” Then be patient and wait for the answer.
When it came to me, it seemed so simple that I almost dismissed it as me trying to give my son a “quick fix” as fathers sometimes do.
So I did what the Bible tells us to do in 1 John 4:1: "Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world." The answer came with a profound sense of peace and joy. Then, with a slight smile on my face, I began to tell him what God wanted him to hear.
After I repeated back to him what I heard him say because clarification is very important, I said "Son, from what I heard you say - doesn't it sound like you are trying to make sense of nonsense, and remember nonsense by its very nature is not supposed to be made sense of?
After what seemed to be quite a painful gut check. he slowly formed the words "You're right!”
Then I said “Now that we are here, what do we do next?"I suggested that together we take on the task of defining what is sense and what is nonsense in this situation, throwing away what is not helpful and using what is. Proverbs 4:10-11 speaks to this directly: "Listen, my son, accept what I say, and the years of your life will be many. I instruct you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths."
Was it easy? Not quite, but worth it!
One of the things I took away from this is that we as humans spend way too much time, money, and life energy on things that just don't make any sense. Could you imagine what life would look like if we used those resources for God's work?
P.S. I am happy to report that not only has my son recovered well, he has grown into a man any father would be proud of!
“The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." Deuteronomy 31:8
Never leave me nor forsake me?
Thank you Papa!
Wake Up Christian