Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Don't mess with the bull, young man. You'll get the horns.

(*The following is an article I wrote for the Murphy Monitor & Wylie News.)

Just Like a Kid

We spent Friday at the Texas State Fair with our four kids. At one point my son, Eric, Jr., was joyfully petting Elsie the Cow. Suddenly, I heard, “Daddy!

As I turned to look my fears were somewhat abated when I realized my preschool-aged son had got his head stuck in the wodden fence and was quite upset. He had put his head through at the top where the gap was wider than at the bottom, so he could get a better look at his bovine friend, but could not retract his noggin.

Afterward, I thought, “Isn’t that typical of a kid?” Doing something silly and then crying out for dad to help! But, as his father, I calmly had him stand and then take his head out.

In the car on the way home I thought about the ironic parallel between my interaction with my son and our interaction with our Heavenly Father. After all, we routinely get ourselves in jams and need our Father to bail us out, for He deals with us as a loving Father.

Jesus explains that God is, in fact, an even better parent to His children than we are to ours. Matthew 7:9-11: "Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!" (ESV)

God’s paternal love may entail discipline, for He disciplines those He loves for our own good (Heb 12:7-8). There may be consequences, like the scolding my boy got from me, but this is part of the maturation process.

God loves His children and patiently nurtures them. But, the question must be raised, are you one of His children? Have you become one of His by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ? John 1:12 tells us “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” (ESV)

Believe on the Him who died, was buried, and rose again as a substitute for sin that you may begin a life lovingly guided by our Heavenly Father for His glory and your joy.


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