I’m impressed with your kids. Well, most of the time.
They’re not my kids.
(Gasp!) You mean…
Noooo, not like that! I’m their father.
Oh, so they are your kids.
Nope. I gave them away a long time ago. In fact, on the day they were born.
To God. He’s the one who gave them to me in the first place. “Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him. Children born to a young man are like arrows in a warrior’s hands” (Psalm 127:3-4, NLT).
Okay, whatever, but they’re your responsibility.
Oh, of course. God gave them to me for a season to help turn them into strategic weapons for His kingdom. So I feed them, clothe them, and train them.
Train them to do what?
Of course. To leave.
To leave for where?
For wherever the Archer wants to aim them.
Aren’t you the archer?
Nope. I’m the bow, held in the hands of an all-powerful, only-wise Marksman.
Wow. That’s doesn’t sound like much fun.
Well, it’s hard sometimes, but it can be very fulfilling. Scripture says “a wise son brings joy to his father” (Proverbs 10:1).
So how does Mama feel about all this?
Well, when she’s not exhausted, she’s usually good with it.
Yeah, well, there are two things that she struggles with sometimes.
Shame, for one thing.
What do you mean?
That verse I just quoted? The back half says that “a foolish son brings grief to his mother.”
Ouch. So when the kids do well, you get the joy, and when they do poorly, Mama feels the shame?
Something like that. It’s all through Proverbs. I call it the shame factor.
So you don’t feel shame when your kids miss the mark?
Nope. They’re not my kids.
So why does Mama feel it?
Not sure, except that it seems she worries she has done something wrong.
So why doesn’t she feel joy when the son does something right?
Oh, I’m sure she does to some extent, but as time goes on, when he does something wise, he’s out of the nest when he does it.
The home. See, if I’m the bow, she’s the nest builder. And ultimately for our daughters and sons to make their mark, they have to leave the nest.
Oh… that reminds me… sorry to hear about the fire at your house.
Not my house.
You didn’t have a fire last week?
Yes. But it’s not my house.
Whose house is it?
God’s. I gave it to Him when we moved into it.
But the deed has your name on it.
Yeah, that gives me legal rights to manage that particular piece of God’s property. But he owns everything, and my job is to take care of it.
Um, pardon me for asking but…
Did I take care of it?
Something like that.
Yes and no. The fire started in the attic when lightning hit the house. There were some flammable things too close to the power lines. A pretty careless oversight. But, everybody got out safely, and most of the property was either safe or salvageable. Plus, I paid to have God’s house insured (smiling).
That was smart.
Just doing my job.
You sure seem to have a cavalier attitude about it. What if everything had burned up?
I’m not saying that wouldn’t be hard, or even sad. But when I gave my life to Jesus, I said yes to the One who “owns the cattle on a thousand hills” and has fully embraced His role as my provider. And if His plan for providing for me involves burning my house down, then let ‘er burn!
I like to think of it as peaceful.
I still think you’re weird.
Well, I know it’s hard to understand, but it helps me sleep at night.
Plus, you have insurance.
(Smiling) Yeah, that…
So you feel the same way about your work?
I do, but to be honest, that one’s harder.
So when you lost your job?
Not my job.
What is your job?
My job is to be faithful, work with diligence and excellence, and offer that back to the Lord as worship and to the people I’m responsible for as service. If I am faithful with that, the economics takes care of itself.
But what if you fail?
Then my Provider and Master Professor will take care of me and take me back to school. My job is to be teachable and trust Him.
You sure don’t seem to worry about much.
Oh, I used to worry all the time.
Yeah. Back when it was my kids and my house, and my money and my job and my future, my church and my problem to solve, I worried all the time.
So what changed?
I got out of ownership and into management. That’s what I was made for in the first place.
Well I have to tell you, I’m inspired.
Thanks, but to be honest, it has cost me a lot to learn those things. I’m just grateful for the Lord’s patience in teaching me.
So… changing the subject… I saw that a certain team is ranked number 1 again in all the preseason polls.
Yeah, it’s been pretty exciting to watch the last couple of years. I think we’re going to do really well again this year. But it isn’t easy when everybody’s gunning for us.
What do you mean “we” and “us?” You don’t even live in the state, and you didn’t even go to the school.
Well, I’m from there, and if you know anything about my home state, you know that you have to pick sides. I made my choice when I was 7 years old. And we’re doing pretty well these days.
I still don’t get this “we” business? Did you play? Did you coach? Did you even go to one of the games?
Actually I mostly just yelled at the TV. But apparently it worked (smiling).
You watch TV on your DVR for crying out loud! You’re yelling at something that’s already happened!
Yeah, that’s where faith comes in.
Unbelievable. Anyway, doesn’t God own all that, too?
All of what?
Sports and football and all that.
Well… I wasn’t going to bring this up… but last year we beat this certain team for the national championship… and soon after that the Pope resigned. Coincidence? I think not.
Good grief! I can’t believe what I’m hearing! God owns your kids, house, job, church, money, and future, but YOU own the football team to a school you never even attended?
Yeah, so what’s your point?
My point is that you’re being a little inconsistent. Okay, a LOT inconsistent.
Well, nobody’s perfect…
At least until the end of the season.
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