It's been 6 months now since my first child and son, Logan, arrived into this world. 6 MONTHS! I know it's cliché to say this but time really has flown by. Even though Logan is still very much a baby, I am finding it difficult to remember what he looked like just 5 months ago. He is changing rapidly and becoming more like a little boy and less like a baby each day. He is full of joy and laughter, infatuated with everything! He's learning new skills, like sitting without help, and crawling...which he's still trying to figure out. He LOVES to jump and stand - it will almost always calm him down if he's a little fussy. He's learning to recognize that Erica is mom and I am dad...and it just destroys me. Through all of this learning and discovery on his part, I'm discovering and learning new things as well.
I have discovered a new love - a love that only a parent can truly understand. I know because I've experienced the change. It's a love that cannot be summed up in words (though some may try, me included). A love that has given me a better understanding of the love God has for us. It's sacrificial. It's compassionate. It's highly sensitive. It's protective. The crazy thing is, it all rushed upon me the second I saw him for the first time. I am now his protector and provider. I meet his every need (Erica would argue otherwise, but you get my point). The love I have for him is the love God has for me - for all of us. From my vantage point, it's the purest example of God's love for mankind here on earth.
I have this desire in me now to teach. It's not a desire to teach grade school or anything like that, but to teach my son about life. I want to teach him how to tie his shoes and how to build a lego car. I want to teach him how to talk and read. I hope he learns good manners and to be polite. I want him to learn right from wrong. I want to teach him about grace and forgiveness. I want Logan to know the stories of faith hero's in the bible like Noah, Moses and King David. I want to teach truths and be an example of uprightness. I want to be the best teacher and example giver I can possibly be. To me, this is a reflection of God's desire for us as well. He wants to be our teacher and example setter. He wants us to know the stories of those who've gone before and have championed His love, mercy and grace. God wants us to know Him so that we can share Him with those in our circle of life. I want my son to know Him as well; to put his faith in God, just as he now puts his faith in his daddy.
You see, what I've been learning and will continue to learn, is that God gives us children to teach us more about Him. You have to blatantly ignore it to not notice it. Obviously, children are much more than teaching tools, but that aspect of the parent/child relationship is important. Don't ignore it. God wants to use it to teach. Let Him.
Being a parent is difficult. It has its trials and times of testing. The lack of sleep and always being on call is tough, never really getting time to yourself for a period. I know that I am also at just the beginning of it all. However, those moments are outweighed by the overwhelming joy and happiness that my son covers me with day in and day out, and the lessons I'm being taught each day.
I look forward to coming home, especially if I've been gone a while, and seeing my little boy get excited to see me. It doesn't get old and I'm not really sure how it could. It's an incredible feeling. I imagine it might be how God feels when we get excited to see Him.