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Today the world sees me as a thirty-two year old. Gone are the glory days of thirty-one.  Now I must…

I know there aren’t too many things that are expected of me, other than the expectations that I place upon myself. Birthdays and New Years are filled with I am going to do this or that in the next year, and I think that if you are driven by “resolutions” then good for you, however that is not how I am wired. There are goals and resolutions I have set for myself, which have put me on a certain trajectory, but if I were to define myself based on whether or not I met my goals, I would be an utter failure!

However, I am not a failure. I am a beloved child of God. While I am not where I thought I would be 10 years ago, God has been by my side and I need to choose to follow the Almighty wherever I am led. I can lose sight of God’s direction if I am too fixated upon being this or that by the age of thirty-two, upon doing this or that in this next year. Losing God’s direction would be true failure in this year.

As I step back and get to fill in a different number in the age box, I choose to be the man God desires me to be this year. I am not setting a goal of being a different weight, I am not setting a goal of doing this or that, I simply want to be more humble, and rely more upon God in everything in my life.

“Here am I Lord, send me!”

Even Greater Gifts

Now that the holiday season is past and the gift giving has ended for a while, I looked back at one of my deepest joys was getting the opportunity to look at the face of my son as he opened his birthday gifts earlier in the season, and Christmas gifts. For his birthday I decided to give him a skateboard (with a helmet and pads), and I was filled with so much glee that he wanted to go out and immediately put on the pads and go ride his skateboard. That feeling was only to be topped by “Christmas” morning, and he woke me up to tell me, “I got a kitchen daddy, I got a kitchen!”, when the night before I was up until 2 AM putting it together, but his excitement made the sleep deprivation worth it.

Although I am not always the most astute person when it comes to getting people gifts, I knew what it was that would bring him a great deal of joy. Certainly, the excitement of getting gifts is enough to bring joy, no matter what the gift might be, but there is a certain gleam in his eye when he gets some particular gifts. I was overjoyed that the gifts I picked out for him were those special gifts. Even when “Santa” gets the credit for bringing the gifts.

However, no matter how good I was at picking out gifts, God is better at getting us just what we need at the right time. At the same time, God is pleased to give us what we need, and sometimes we also get those wants. We are blessed, we are bestowed with gifts, and God expresses love to us in diverse ways. God wants a relationship with us no matter what, and has gone to the cross to show us the extent of that love.

Jesus teaches us about God’s gift giving in Luke’s Gospel,

“So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks fore a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish? Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” (Luke 11:9-13)

One of those great gifts God blessed me with after Christmas was snow. On Sunday after church the snow started coming down, and it kept going until the next morning. I was just in awe of the beauty with which God has blessed us. Although I never would have thought to ask God for snow, I hope that the worship filled response I had toward the snow, allowed God the same joy I had when I saw the excitement in my son’s face.

 

Happy Birthday

Three years ago, I became a father to a little boy, therefore I want to wish him a very happy birthday! As I woke up this morning I listened to him singing, “Happy Birthday”, and I was overjoyed, as I joined in. I asked him about his birthday, and what he was going to do, and he responded with “party” and “presents”.

Today there is a party, as today we celebrate and mark the passage of a year, and we remember that we all have been blessed by his life. We celebrate also by giving gifts, where we further are blessed by watching the exuberant joy that he exudes by the prospect of all of the fun he is going to have with his new toys.

I am blessed, and on this day as we mark another year, and we give presents, I am reminded that the one, triune God, gives us greater gifts. My son is a wonderful blessing that reminds me on a daily basis that God loved me enough to give me life, and he loved me enough to grant me the responsibility of being a parent. Thank you, I will try and worship you through this day, seeking to glorify You by being the best dad I can through the power of the Holy Spirit!