Matthew 18:1-3 – At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
So this week I am going to show my geeky side a little. When I was growing up, I used to play the game Dungeons & Dragons a lot.
No comments from the Christian community about whether playing D&D is a good Christian thing to do, especially if you Christians go out and see movies like The Avengers and Harry Potter or read books about spiritual warfare that take a lot of artistic license (Frank Peretti or Ted Dekker) or listen to music that doesn’t spend all its time worshiping Christ, of which I am just as guilty, by the way.
But when I used to play the game, one of the things I always tried to get was a bag of holding. The bag of holding was a 2’ by 4’ cloth sack that, when opened, would open to a nondimensional space making the size inside bigger than the assumed size outside. Basically, you could carry a lot more stuff than you thought because this bag could hold double or triple the amount you could normally carry.
Psalm 23:24 – The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice; he who fathers a wise son will be glad in him.
A few major things are happening in the next week. First, the Sunday the 21st is Father’s Day. Then, on Sunday the 28th, I am getting married. While to you, the first may seem more important than the other, to me they are both significant, and, I believe the government should consider my marriage date to be a national holiday.
But this Father’s Day, I will celebrate with my two direct children. Since they primarily live with my ex-wife, I won’t have them this weekend but will be stopping by after church to go to lunch with them. Not the big celebration that most fathers have on that day, but, to me, it is just as significant to know that my kids want to spend a few hours with me on a weekend I don’t have them. Probably hit the Greene Turtle or another local restaurant and just sit and talk about the summer.
What is significant about this Father’s Day is that this will be the last one that I can say I only have 2 kids.
The following week I am getting married.
Isaiah 43:5 – Fear not, for I am with you; I will bring your offspring from the east, and from the west I will gather you.
On that day, I will immediately go from 2 kids to 6!
Now, granted, the other 4 kids are not my flesh and blood and 2 of them are grown and on their own already, but I still feel responsible, even if not to the degree their biological dad does, to their success.
Does that mean I love my own 2 kids any less? No.
Does that mean I won’t spend any time alone with my 2 kids? No. There won’t be as much private time with them now that I am married and have 3 other people in the house with me, but I believe it very important for dads to spend one on one time with their children just like I believe it important for moms to do the same.
And I plan on doing one on one time with all the kids throughout the year, even her kids. Her older son is into culinary programs so possibly seeing if a celebrity chef is in town and going to see them would be cool for him. And her youngest is into baseball, so maybe going to a Baysox game or something with just him one night will be good.
Psalm 127:3-5 – Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.
The Bible calls the family a quiver. And my quiver is about to go from 2 arrows to 6. My small quiver is now going to be holding much more than I ever thought it could…or should.
A lot of fears come to mind with becoming an overnight father to 4 more kids. First, how will I still show love to my own kids without them feeling like they are being left out? Next, how can I gain credibility with the 4 news ones so that they don’t feel like I am showing favor to my 2. Third, how will parenting work when Mimi and I are clearly VERY different parents?
Well, none of those I have the answers to.
But I have been reading Hebrews 11 a lot lately. In that chapter, we relive the stories of many of the Old Testament faith characters. None of them knew what they were getting into when they said “yes” to God. They simply went.
And that is what I am going to do.
And let God figure out the details.
And then be prepared for God to send blessing after blessing on a family whose first line of defense will be in Him when questions arise.
Genesis 33:5 – And when Esau lifted up his eyes and saw the women and children, he said, “Who are these with you?” Jacob said, “The children whom God has graciously given your servant.”