Sunday, July 7, 2013

Learning from the Father and Son

In one of my classes for seminary, I am able to develop a few of my own assignments based on things I feel I need to learn and grow in.  One of the assignments I gave for myself was to read the book of John and find some connecting points between THE Father and Son relationship and other father-son relationships.  When I created the assignment for myself, I was not certain what I would find - after all, I did not want to become heretical in saying that my relationship with Colton is similar to Jesus and the Father in terms of divinity, perfection, and so on.  However, I have found that in a general sense there are points at which the human relationship and divine relationship does intersect, and so I'll list a few of those here:

Reflection #1:  Sons reflect their fathers

Jesus had a
perfect relationship with the heavenly Father, and reflected that relationship and that sinlessness when he was on earth.  While that's not the type of relationship I can give to Colton, it is true that he will reflect me in many ways (and his mother of course).  Colton will be listening to me - not only to my words but also the way I speak those words - and for a while he will do just like I do.  This will be encouraging where I am strong but discouraging where I frankly need to mature.  Colton will also be watching me and mimicking things I do.  He will certainly be developing into his own little person, but for much of his early years he'll reflect his dad.  I better start growing up.

Reflection #2:  I hope my son can trust me like Jesus trusts the Father

As I read John, I saw several places where Jesus kept firmly trusting in the Father even when the future was very dark (as he got closer to the cross).  He has a perfect trust in his Father, who is perfect.  Translating this to my imperfect-ness and my imperfect relationship to my son, there is still a correlation here.  I want to be a godly dad who Colton (and any other children should God give them to us) trusts without hesitation.  When I assure him of something - that I'll be somewhere, take care of something, or provide something for him - I hope he knows I am serious and can be trusted.  While I cannot be perfect like the Father is perfect in his trust-worthiness, I can continue to ask God to make me a man to be trusted by my son.

Reflection #3:  I hope Colton and I can speak intimately together like Jesus and the Father

Let's face it - most father-son relationships are built on activities for bonding, like playing a sport or fixing a car or pulling a prank on mom.  Memories are largely made based on things fathers and sons do together, and this is not a bad thing at all.  My hope is that I can add to these memories some conversations and intimate moments such that feelings are shared and love is expressed through words as well as actions.  Jesus and the Father perfectly model this loving conversation model, which (as I've said a few times already) our human father-son model can never achieve in the same way.  But I can strive to take time to hear from my son's heart and speak into my son's heart, building his confidence in our relationship not only because I take him fun places but because I tell him very clearly I love him and always will.

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