I just want to show you love.
Today you turn 8 years old. Old enough to be a real big boy, but not quite old enough to be a man. There is so much I want to teach you, so much I want to help you understand, so many things I wish I could explain, and all the things from which to keep you safe. They are growing by the day, and sometimes the task seems overwhelming and impossible – but one look at your face and I know I’ll always have the strength to try.
The world was different then, on the day that you were born. Things were simpler and more “for sure” – and not just because of you. I thought I knew then, all I wanted to show you. How to walk and talk, how to throw and catch, how to ride a bike, and how to mow the lawn. Early on you showed me you could handle more than those – and so I had to up my game. How to crack a sarcastic joke, and how to apologize to mom after we do. How to pass some gas, and how to blame it on the dog. How to take care of little sister, even though it’s completely obvious to EVERYONE she probably doesn’t need it. And how to become obsessed with sports, while still maintaining the appearance of a normal functioning human being. We’re still working on the last one aren’t we?
The world, MY world is changing, with every year, every day that you are growing – the job is changing – and it sometimes feels like I am falling behind. There is still SO much to teach you, so much you do not know. Like what to do when you think a girl’s cute – but probably more accurately, what NOT to do. What to say when you screw it up, and when it’s necessary to stand your ground. How to respond when people disagree with you, and when it’s probably just not worth it. These and many more make up the incredible task of being a father, YOUR father, and you make me want to be up for the challenge.
But the truth is son, some days I’m not. There are things (oh SO many) I do not know, and stuff I cannot do. There are times that I will fail, and ways that I might make things worse. There are circumstances I cannot solve and problems I cannot fix. There are situations that I can’t resolve and people whose minds I simply won’t change. I know it seems right now that daddy is a superman, and he’ll always be that way – but I’m secretly a nervous wreck about the day you realize that’s not the case. I’m a fallible, fallen human being – just trying to do the best that I can.
One thing I know for sure. Love is still the powerful force on the planet – and it is a choice. The God we serve has chosen to love me, with a love more beautiful and filled with grace than anything I’ve ever known. One way I know He does, is He gave me an incredible gift – that’s you, my precious little boy. He will teach you, He will guide you, He will show you how. When this earthly father fails you – He will be there – and He never will. In THAT, I find peace, and I can trust. I am SO thankful He believed in me enough, to grace me with the privilege of being your dad. Some days I’ll do Him proud, others I’ll fall short. But on every day that I have left, I’ll give you what I have, and on the days that’s not enough just know..
I just want to show you love.