I think a lot about my future. I mean who doesn’t? But lately, it hasn’t been so much about the trivial things like a career, or where I’ll live, or what I’ll accomplish. I find myself thinking a lot about my kids. I wonder what they’ll look like, and who they will be. I wonder how much they’ll take after their mother or me. I wonder what they will want be when they grow up. I wonder how long it’ll take them to fall in love. All of these wonderful and scary thoughts play out in my head as I think about these people who aren’t even here yet.
For some reason, I find myself less concerned with what I will do with my life and more focused on who I am, and will be. It may seem naïve, but sometimes I catch myself saying in my head that it doesn’t matter what I do the rest of my life as long as I’m a great husband and father. It’s funny how admitting that can make me feel foolish, even when I know that it’s not. Somewhere along the line we have tied our value to college degrees, nice cars, fancy jobs, and beautiful homes. So many times I feel this pressure to live up to this idea that if I don’t have the perfect everything it diminishes my usefulness as a future husband and father. I have so many friends who have spent the past couple years making the right financial decisions, and moving up in their work places. On the outside they seem to have it all together. I’m human so of course there is a part of me that wants these things. At the same time, I find comfort in the fact that I’m developing a part of myself that they haven’t begun to tap in to. They will all be good providers and I won’t diminish the importance of that. But, there is more to being a good husband than bringing home a good paycheck.
While the rest of my peers are figuring out credit scores and job benefits, I am learning everyday how to be a Godly man. Which to some may not seem important, and even counter productive. That’s because they don’t understand the long-term investment I’m making in to being a good man for the long run, and not just a successful one for right now. I’ve learned that if you disconnect yourself from what society tells you to be, and plug in to who God has called you to be, the margin of disappointment decreases significantly. Teaching my kids about credit pales in comparison to teaching them how to forgive. I want to teach them how to listen for God’s voice more than I want them to learn how to swing a bat, or ride a bike. It’s less important to me to lecture them about what they’re going to do with their future than it is to get them to understand the truth that their future is in God. I want for my kids what all fathers want, for my children to be happy. But, I want their happiness to be rooted in their security in God and not in what they drive, or what degrees they attain.
It took my whole life for me to figure out that who I am is monumentally more significant than what I do. A lesson I hope to teach my children early. Writer, pastor, or dishwasher my children will have a father with integrity. A father who understands and practices unconditional love and forgiveness. They will know that influence isn’t dependent on title.