Was on one of my daily bike rides. As I was riding I was listening to Dr. Bob Barnes talk about fatherhood. I was glued to every word, analyzing what he was saying with how I have performed as a father. You see I’m a father of a 16 year old boy, Ryan (whose name means Little King). Ryan lives in Michigan with his mother, we were divorced when he was young and I have lived out of state from him for the past nine years. Ryan comes down to see me every summer and we talk every other day on the phone…God has kept our hearts as one.
We all need to evaluate ourselves more than we do to make sure we stay on track. Dr. Barnes, who wrote his dissertation on the absence of father’s in society and it’s effect on our world. He was explaining that what our kids want most from us is our time. We all know that deep down, but we substitute our time for provision…gifts, food, clothes, cell phones and so on. But time is the core of substantial growth in our children. It’s where they learn to talk and listen and act and respond, and this development is then taken out in their world and explored. They analyze and discern what worked and what didn’t and then they come back for more. This is called maturing.
My son wants me to hear him…so I can understand who he is. He wants me to talk to him, so he can learn who I am. He wants me to just be with him, so he can KNOW that he is part of something important…a relationship that is meaningful. A boy or girl out in the world without someone teaching them and guiding them is lost. They are clinging to anyone so they can belong. If a person of authority is not leading, one of their piers will take the role…this is why immaturity is so rampant.
I have not been the father I should have or could have been. I don’t know why? I only know I can start now. I can begin to share what he NEEDS. ME!
Every person has their own game day experience…whenever they choose to. What do I mean? I am learning and have understood that life is a journey…it is not and cannot be an event driven life. Have you noticed that everyday is not a bowl of cherries? How do we rejoice always, pray continually and give thanks in everything?
Many questions with fewer answers. To me a game day experience is the choice, attitude and belief that in every day opportunities arise where our eyes are opened and our hearts are spoken to.
You know what I’m talking about. If you have played sports, opened presents on Christmas Day or felt the pitter-patter of your heart when your hand touches hers. A game day experience is the anticipation of a joyous time…it is not truly knowing what the outcome will be, but your hopes are high.
I have lived long enough to know emptiness, defeat, trials, despair…yet I can look back at the seemingly unfairness of life and see how it has shaped me, molded me, prepared me for my purpose in life. If I allow the mundane grab hold of my day…I lose focus on the adventure that is right before my eyes. Consider; the laugh of my son, the victory of another embattled morning bike ride, the prayers that never cease, the words, attitudes and smiling faces of my students, the interactions with others good and bad, the daily needs, the fears and doubts, the evolving loneliness of singleness, the revolving sports world and whatever else comes flying by this life we lead.
My game day experience is the outlook that I MUST acquire though I have not yet fully attained it… that I am only given this day once…so how I view it and what I do with it colors my life with joy or not.
When you have lived more years in the not…you are driven to change. This is a good thing. Can I have a witness?
May The Lord open your heart and eyes as He has done mine…Amen!