Father’s Day and Discipleship

Father’s day is almost here.   This father’s day is a bit more special than others.

father's day 1My son and his wife are expecting their first child — Hunter Michael — early in July.  It is a very special time for them and a joy to see how excited they are.

My daughter and her husband have 2 boys.  They are from her previous marriage, but her husband has tried very hard to be not just a step-father.  He have been Dad as much as they will allow.  We are especially excited this father’s day because they are now expecting their first child together — name and gender unknown (although we have been told to “think pink”).

As grandpa it makes my own father’s day a bit more special and I am excited for both the boys as they will experience fatherhood from a whole new perspective this year.

Thinking about being a father — and now a grandfather — it is interesting how parallel the discipleship cycle is.   As you study the maturity wheel below notice the inner ring.

The inner ring shows some basic categories of the spiritual journey.

1.  Dead.  Separated from God and the saving grace of Christ.

2.  Infant.  Alive, but so very dependent upon the care of others to survive and grow.

3.  Children.  Able to function and have limited independence, but still requiring supervision and care to continue to not just survive, but also to thrive.

4.  Young Adults.  Those who are beginning to be very independent and also quite capable, but still harboring those self-centered streaks that can be very dangerous.

5.  Parent.  Becoming a parent forces the “me” out of the equation and moves one quickly toward the view of the “family”.  Specifically becoming a father can really bring home the need to be focused on the family’s needs over those of my own.

Where do you stand in terms of the maturity wheel?   Even if you have been a disciple for years — it is quite possible to still be and infant or a child.  If so — what steps can you take to move toward greater maturity?

If you are already at a young adult or parent level — who is in our care?  My son and son-in-law are discovering that they are now responsible for more than just their own needs and wants.  One of them commented to me that they understand now why I never have driven the type of cars I love.  I sacrifice that “want” so my kids (and grand kids) can enjoy the gifts and presents grandpa provides.

In churches those of us who are grandparents (spiritually) are willing to give up some things to see others grow and mature — to have fun and fellowship as a growing body.

The first Easter dinner after my father died I found myself sitting at his place at the head of the table with all the kids, their kids, and mom chattering at the table.  As I watched this pre-meal fellowship I realized why my father (and my grandfather) often sat there before a meal and simply smiled.   It is fun to see the family grow and mature.

It is fun to see the family of God grow and mature as well……

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