LETTERS TO THE NEW DAD
(The Father’s Love)
“How great is the love the Father has lavished on us,
that we should be called children of God!” (1 John 3:1a).
The love of a parent, for a child, is always stronger than the love of a child, for his parent.
Granted, there will always be some in society whose dysfunctions prevent them from being the parents God calls them to be, but for the most part, we love our children with a love they could not begin to comprehend, or return.
I say this to you because you are getting ready to find this out.
He is almost here!! This little bundle, Max, that we have prayed over, and for.
Your son. I can’t say it without smiling.
We are beside ourselves with joy! We are anxious to wrap love around him, enfold him within the protection and shelter of family.
He will be closely safeguarded, and treasured, by hearts that already adore him, and the God who gave him to us.
All of your life, your father has told you that you will not be able to comprehend our love for you until you have your own son. And soon that day is coming.
So get ready – the doors of your heart are getting ready to be blown off!
Because what you think you understand love to be, will be completely redefined when a nurse places this living, breathing part of you, into your arms.
I can’t wait for that moment for you. You have such a tender heart, you will be completely captivated when Max opens his eyes, and gets a look at you for the first time.
He already knows your voice, he’ll recognize you.
I know you know this, but when his newborn fingers lock around your finger, the swelling in your heart will push past any apprehension. You will be greatly satisfied in knowing life is forever changed in that moment.
Don’t be surprised when a sense of responsibility floods through you. It’ll be fierce, and it should be. You are his father. You will provide for him, tend to him, comfort him and teach him how to be a man of God.
A baby is a package of hope.
He is a window into tomorrow, and he will carry into future generations, the inscriptions you have left on his heart.
And here is a secret that parents know – a baby makes us want to be better.
We are lulled by life sometimes, getting caught up in the workings of everday.
But, a baby – a baby will jolt us out of being reactionary and catapult us straight into action. A baby will cause re-evaluation, re-examination, re-consideration, and re-assessment – because we do not want to get this wrong.
One night after you bring him home, it will be just the two of you (because I know you – you will watch after Sara, too, and let her go back to sleep).
It’ll be just you and the little guy. Staring into those eyes, just formed by his Maker, it will occur to you that this baby is going to reflect you.
And that scares a parent, because we know how flawed we are.
So, we pray, because we know we are inefficient “changers” of ourselves.
We pray for God to increase our faith, to lead us to wisdom, to make us humbly able to admit our mistakes.
We beg Him (every parent who is a believer knows the urgency of begging at His feet) to fill in the gaps of our inefficiency for our children – not for our sake’s, but for the sake of the impressionable heart that we hold in our hands.
You will be an amazing dad. He will learn from you how to love hard, work hard, and play harder. He will most likely have a great sense of humor, love to make up words like “rhinoceros snot”, and want you to take him for rides on the riding lawnmower and rollercoasters.
I pray he develops your tenderness of heart and your love for adventure. I hope he is blessed with your amazing mind and gift for doing – well – everything! (Seriously, is there anything you can’t do?)
I know your patience will provide him a safe environment from which he can learn and grow.
It will be fun watching what your son will learn from you.
But it will be even more gratifying watching what you will learn from him.
I pray you are able to gather deep down into your soul, what a great love God, your Father, has for you.
Never in your life will 7 or 8 pounds (I’m guessing 7 lbs 13 oz) hold so much power over you. Your buttons will pop with pride, your eyes will fill with tears, and your heart…your heart…it will never be the same.
And THAT is when I want you to say these words to yourself…
“Oh…so this is how God feels about me.”
I pray it is a phrase you say over – and over – and over – because parenting is a gift that allows us a glimpse into the heart of the Father.
When you hold that baby, who can do nothing for you, yet you love with your whole being – say – “Oh…so this is how God feels about me.”
Because every good and perfect emotion you have for Max is just a morsel of what Your Father feels for you.
When you try to teach Max to jump into the pool, and gently help him trust you enough to spring into your arms – say – “Oh…so this is how God feels about me.”
And when you are fortunate enough to be able to shower grace and forgiveness on him when he makes mistakes – say over and over to yourself so that it sinks in good and strong – “Oh…so this is how God feels about me.”
The most comforting thing about that, is knowing that same grace and forgiveness is there every time we, as parents, fail. He is a Shelter not just for our children, but also for us.
There are a lot of good parenting tips out there – but here is the best one your mom can tell you:
SEEK GOD. Seek His will…Seek His ways…Seek His guidance.
He promises you will always find Him. And there is no better Source for a parent than the Ultimate Parent.
He doesn’t just make us better parents. He makes us new — and that makes us better parents.
The world gives you tips — but God gives you wisdom.
The world helps you learn methods of fathering – but God IS the Father – and the only One wholly(holy) capable of teaching you how to be one.
So, I pray this over you, my son:
I pray blessings over your house and your heart. I pray the desire to be a Christ-centered home increases with each new day. I pray protection over you as you work for your family and wisdom in your decision making and goal setting.
I pray increased love and devotion for your wife, as you and Sara begin an exciting season in your lives as parents. I ask that the Lord will continue to draw your hearts towards Him, and each other, as the years go by and family grows.
I pray strength and wisdom over you as you become the most important man in your son’s life. I ask the Lord to bless you, and guard you in your endeavors, and that He daily grows you into a man with a heart like His.
And I especially pray that a whole new section of your heart is revealed to you with the birth of your son, that you see with new eyes, how great a love the Father has lavished on you.
With much love for you, and pride in you,