Archive for May 2, 2008

9/20

May 2, 2008

I attended “Donuts for Dads” at my 6 yr old’s school this morning. What I saw there reminded me so much of the healthy tension that exists in many churches, including ours. Especially in church planting, we talk about being outward focused, placing our energy on reaching whoever is not present. Yet, we are to be disciplining and equipping believers, being sure their faith is maturing. I somewhat experienced that this morning. Here I was sitting with my 6 yr old son, enjoying a nice fat free donut…wait, that’s way off…a nice, dripping wet, TASTY donut (much better) and enjoying my time with him. And while doing my best to give my attention to him, my heart was still being drawn to the scene around me.

There were 20 kids in the room, only 9 dads. Now, I realize that many dads had to be at work. I realize many had obligations that simply made them unavailable. In fact, 9 out of 20 is probably not a bad number. However, when the teacher said a little schpill about fathers and then handed out some stuff and then asked the kids to go hug their dad….my heart just sunk. It’s just how I’m wired. As I’m hugging Braden and giving him my attention, there was that healthy tension of observing the other 11 kids that looked around…feeling out of place. While some of their stories are simply, “My dad is at work,” I’m sure many have a much more painful story. And I desperately wanted to know their story. I desperately wanted to make sure they got a hug too. I wanted to break out in a Sunday morning lesson, OLC style. I wanted to grab the different supplies in the room and create illustrations, telling of the Heavenly Father that loves them immensely (I probably wouldn’t use that word with them though, ha) and has a great plan for their life and how in troubles, they can always turn to Him.

How was this tension resolved this morning…and how is it resolved in the church? Well, great question. For me, at least this morning, I did the best thing I could do on the spot: I helped the teacher by serving the kids. I didn’t ignore my son, but I got up to help pass out donuts and juice and napkins. (She was going solo, without her teacher aid.) I then was able to give the kids, if nothing else, a smile-a laugh-an encouraging word-and listened to their random talk.