I officially kept my son alive for an entire work day all by myself! (Note: obviously the Lord did this, but it still makes me feel good about my fatherly potential)
His mama came home quite relieved that he hadn’t screamed all day long. Actually we only had about an hour of screaming until I changed bottle types and found one that he preferred. All in all it was a great day together.
I realized how much this guy is dependent on our decisions for him right now. He’ll have no recollection of any of this, but his entire life may be determined by it. I wonder what life would be like if we could somehow give advice to our young parents about how we wanted to be raised, or about decisions we wish they would have made for us. What would Judah say to us? Would he say that we did a great job? Would he wish things had been different? Some of the decisions we make for him have lots of research behind them. Some, hardly any at all. For instance, we read in one brief email that breastfed babies need vitamin D supplements. So we asked the doctor and she said “Sure, here is a prescription for one.” And then we got it and gave it to him. Very little research involved + decision made = hope it’s the right thing for his little frame.
And then other things we spent significant time thinking through such as his birth. We did what we believed to be the best thing for him based on a great many factors. Again, we hope that it pans out some day.
Currently my brother and sister-in-law are adopting a child from India. They are presented with a possible child – who inevitably has some special physical need – and have to say yes or no. There is almost no way to predict what life will be like with that child in the years to come. And they can’t give the child back if he/she proves very burdensome.
My point is that there are so many unknowns as regards these little ones. I guess I’ve never experienced such a demand for faith before. The shaping of a human life is no joke. In my work I see severely depraved people who are the way they are because of the choices their parents made. There are direct correlations between unconcerned, apathetic parents and children who grow up making horrible decisions. There are direct correlations between parents who make uninformed medical choices for their babies, and those babies growing up with medical problems they never had to deal with in the first place.
God is still sovereign over all of these choices and outcomes though. If we are diligent and are good stewards of all that He’s given us to make good decisions, He will be honored in whatever it is that we choose, and He’ll bless us by working those things out for our good. But if we are careless in our decisions, He will allow us to face the consequences of our sin. The point of parenting then, is the pursuit of God by the parent. If I am pursuing His glory through my life, He will guide my decisions for my son.
It’s a promise to rest in and a force against worry and fear.