Ephesians 5:16 NLT
Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days.
Easter was a great day for our church and my family. I love to see people respond to God. That is just what happened this past Sunday before my family and I spent some time together out of town. I am grateful that God allows me to share His truth with others, but one of the things that continues to tug at my heart is the responsibility each parent has to lead their kids to Jesus.
I chose to spend some time this week reading a book that has been on my list for several months. It is Wonderstruck by Margret Feinberg. I love the way she writes and especially how she draws parallels between our daily lives and the sweet, incredible presence of God. Of coarse I am a slow reader, but it has already blessed me big time.
Yet there are a couple other times during the week that seem to be very important and stick out in my mind. The biggest assets in my life are my family. Literally my wife and my kids are my world. This week proved that once again.
At one point in our time away Julie and I were talking back and forth, and the conversation was intense. During, after and even now I see how blessed I am that God gave me Julie, and how lame I am to miss even a small piece of our time together. I throw myself into the things that I do. That would be church, helping people and such that gets my time. Julie is always not far away and so understanding. She deserves my attention, and my life is stronger when I focus more on her. I am grateful for the time we had together.
Proverbs 5:18 NLT
Let your wife be a fountain of blessing for you. Rejoice in the wife of your youth.
Proverbs 18:22 NLT
The man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favor from the Lord.
A day or so later the females of our household left us guys for a few hours while they went to a movie. That is when Ryan and I did some manly things. We walked on the beach and talked about the stuff we saw. We road around and looked at all kinds of stuff. During our few hours together I was once again convicted that it is vital that I pour my life into my son. My desire for this young guy is that He will grow to love God most and want to do whatever God calls Him to do. Wouldn’t it be awesome if God led Ryan in to full time ministry? I have to choose to spend extra time with this boy and give Him my full attention.
The next day my girls and I went on an adventure. It began with getting the right clothes on and doing makeup. They put on makeup and such. I didn’t. The next step was figuring out where the mall is located. If we videoed our GPS seeking and our conversation, you would have to laugh. We like to shop, but this was a particular place we don’t often go. One of my girls is a bit like me and runs to the clothing racks marked “clearance”, and the other is like me because I just like to shop and spend. At a couple different points, as I watched them and then as we ate lunch together, I was convicted of how their future is much in the hands of their mom and I. That is heavy, but what a great blessing it is to be able to love these kids and shape their lives.
Teach them to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up.
Proverbs 22:6 NLT
Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it.
Time is precious. There are many reasons why time is precious, but one of the greatest is the fact that we really have so little time. It seems like yesterday our oldest was born (that is almost 16 years ago). Our middle daughter just auditioned for the Roanoke Youth Symphony Orchestra and made it (seems like yesterday she started playing the clarinet). Our youngest has so much personality and is so funny (seems like it was only a few days ago that we were changing his diaper).
Time flies by, and time is a gift. It is a precious gift that we must not waste. Yes, Julie and I will be together when the kids are grown and gone (hard to believe we will celebrate our 20th anniversary in a few months). We have to cherish our time together and pour our lives into our kids in a way that makes a difference in their future and their eternity.
Because time is precious, it is time to make some hard choices.