Confessions of a Soon to be Father (TCM)
In just a few weeks, my wife will give birth to our first child. As time has gone by I have thought more and more on the things I will be teaching him, and the ways I will be teaching him. Many parents are concerned with the love of their child, their safety, their happiness, wanting to make sure that the struggles that they had in life do not meet their own children later on down the road. I have been surprised that my thoughts have done nowhere near these. Sure, I want my boy to love me, I want him to be safe, and to be happy…but I also want my boy to grow into a man. A certain kind of man…a man that is better than I am. You see parenting without the end goal in sight is dangerous in my mind. If every action you take for your child is not asking, “How is this teaching my child to be a better person?” Than you need to stop and check yourself, your motives, and your purpose as a parent.
We have been entrusted by God with the training of another person capable of either making this world a better place to live or a worse place to live. As parents, our concern should not be with our child’s happiness or their thoughts of us in a moment of turmoil, or even their safety…but on who they are to become and what they are to do with their lives. This has lead to my wife and I making decisions about how are children will be raised that likely would make others think us…a little odd.
Without going into detail, here I will share with you our general disposition to parenting. Our job is to love him enough to discipline him when he needs it, and be merciful when he does not deserve it. Our job is to give him a safe place to learn and make mistakes, but at the same time not so safe from consequence, that he does not learn anything. I am not looking to give my boy, “better than I had it,” but am looking to teach him what it means to be a servant of God and all of the hard decisions that come with that. My goal is to foster imagination but also ground him in the real world showing him where God lies in the midst of it all.
Lastly, I hope that I teach my child what it means to be honest when it is hard, and how to push through when everyone and everything seems to be pushing against you. These are the things I wish to instill in my boy…these are the things that I want him to learn because in the end my goal is to train up a man better than myself. To give my son more than I have by instilling in him with things that I myself wish I had. I am not concerned with giving my boy more than I had, I am interested in teaching him how to be more than I am. Peace and blessings and thank you for reading.