(Picture of my son running a video camera at CIY MIX. He is a youth coach for our middle school ministry)
This photo does two things to me:
It makes me a proud dad…
It strikes fear into my heart…
It makes me proud because my son is willing to listen and follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit for direction and calling in his life, because honestly who in their right mind wants to be a youth pastor (If you didn’t know, I was a youth pastor for 18 years until just recently). I am proud because my son wants to be a kingdom worker, and be a servant-leader in the heart of Jesus.
It also strikes fear in my heart, because it reminds me that our kids pay attention to us and that time is short.
I have had the honor and privilege to be my son’s youth pastor for almost all of his teens years (This is his senior year of high school and I jut recently moved to another ministry position at the church). He is graduating from high school this coming year and wants to head off to Ozark Christian College (My alma-mater), after he graduates, and begin the journey of being a youth pastor. My son has been observing me all these years, both at home and in my ministry.
He has observed my good side and my ugly side. He has seen when I get this follower of the way thing right and when I have fallen flat on m face.
I only hope that I have been an exemplary example to him; someone who has demonstrated a dependency on the power of the Holy Spirit and the desire to be a reflection of Jesus to my neighbors… I hope I uplifted Jesus and not myself. He is following in my footsteps, I only hope I was a good model for him.
As mentioned, my son is a senior in high school and in about nine short months he will be heading off to college and begin his own journey of what God has called him to. Who knows he might find a wife and begin a family, he might permanently move to another state or even another country, or he might realize God has put different calling on his life and pursue that.
What I know is that in a blink of an eye he has matured to become an independent young adult who is following his own path, with his own hopes and dreams that the Lord has laid on his heart… It seems like yesterday that my son and I were rolling on the ground wrestling each, and of course I let him win… NOT.
What this all boils down to is legacy. As parents, we need to remember that the focal point of our legacy should not be ourselves, our hopes, dreams, and desires, but it should be *us* following Jesus to the best of our ability, and displaying to our kids the grace that God gives us when we have victories or when we fail.
Our kids are watching us. Who are you modeling to your kids?