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13 February 2009

Birthday #1

Today is my son's birthday!

I'm just a little disappointed that my perspective changes as I get older (I'm talking about myself here). It would be kind of refreshing if I still approached life with reckless abandon. However, I do my best to remember what was happening each time I told my dad, "I'll never do that to my son," when I thought he just was being mean. It sounds trite to say that it's beginning to dawn on me that he actually had a reason for doing those things, but there; I said it.

When I was 16 or 17, I put a bumber sticker on my car that read, "Avenge yourself. Live long enough to be a problem to your children." My dad graciously let me drive around with it for a while before he removed it. But I think that I'm avenging myself quite well sometimes. I notice that in spite of the fact that I'm doing my best to look at situations objectively, I'm often a little cloudy.

If you're a parent, you may have found, like I have, that it's awful to get upset with your kid for not immediately doing something you've asked him to do, only to find out that he was, for instance, helping his sister to do something and it prevented him from obeying immediately. Sometimes what I think has been a show of rebellion actually turns out to be a situation in which I'm quite wrong.

To draw a quick parallel, I've done this with other Christ-followers, too. Probably more often than I think. One of the verses that I've talked about repeatedly is Philippians 2:3, "Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves." (NLT) I'm obviously not saying that everyone is right all the time, or that their actions are acceptable no matter what, but I've found that it's taking the easy road to assume that if someone's perspective doesn't line up with my own, they're wrong, they're not listening to God that day, etc.

"Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry." (James 1:19, NLT)

I'll close by saying happy birthday to my son! I'm partially paranoid, so I won't tell you his name or his age in case you're a crazy internet nut case...


Christy said...

I know what you mean. It's crazy how all of a sudden (or so it seems) everything that I complained about my parents doing 'to me' as a teen starts making sense. I cringe when I think about my behavior back then and I pray fervently to God that my kids won't be the same way that I was. So far, so good, but that's no reason to stop praying!

Jake Woods said...

On the flip side of things (me being only 17), i've noticed one peculiar thing from my parents.

As i get older, they seem to be getting smarter. Any clue why this is? =P

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