March 28, 2005

Affirmation

"This bike is a piece of shit."

"Well, look at who owns it."

A piece of a conversation between a teenager and his father. The teenager wants a new motorbike. The father wants a new son.

Well, OK, that's not entirely true, not the part about the father wanting a new son; but the conversation did happen. And I'm bothered by it.

I'm bothered because I know this teenager. He's one of those who sometimes hang out at my house. I've written about him here before.

I'm bothered because I know the father. He's not a bad father. He loves and cares for his children. He works long & hard for his family. He's a good man. I'm bothered, because for just a moment, he forgot how precious and wonderful his child is.

Mostly, though, I'm bothered because too often I am that father. Too often, I forget how good and precious and wonderful are the people around me, especially those I know best: my wife and my two sons. Too often, I forget to affirm them and let them know how special they are too me. Too often, even though I don't say it, I make them feel like a "piece of shit." Why is it so hard to affirm those to whom we are closest?

God knows me intimately, knows more about me than I will ever know or want to know. Even so, God continues to affirm me. God's greatest affirmation was when God became human, like me, and died for me, and how God now continues to love me and offer me new life through the risen Son.

I pray that I may have just a portion of that same ability to love and affirm.

2 comments:

the reverend mommy said...

Good lesson that we all should take to heart.
Blessings to you this Easter Monday.

Jim said...

Have been reading you for quite a while, enjoying the One Who, quite obviously, lives in you. As far as kids, I think we, as parents, are so concerned about shaping "goodness" into who they are, that we too often neglect to make them aware of the goodness they possess. Peace, my friend......