Dads and Fathering, Fathers, Jesus, Legacy, Parenting, Rites of Passage Christian fathering, father, heritage, legacy, Rite of Passage
THEN, HE ASCENDED INTO THE CLOUDS, BUT DID NOT LEAVE US ALONE.
It’s been a week since the celebration of our Lord’s resurrection. But it’s still fresh in way’s I’ve not experienced before. I think it hangs on for me because of the extraordinary series of events I’ve recited here that capped off my grandson’s Year of Passage.
The connection is legacy. The essence of the story on the Cross and the days that followed is legacy, it’s our biblical heritage of truths and examples passed down through the generations. We sometimes forget the history-changing events that the Gospels identify as Jesus reappears and further touches the life of His disciples (which, by extension, include us). The walk to Emmaus, the prayer meeting with the disciples, the promise of the indwelling Holy Spirit, the announcement of the Great Commission, and the glorious ascension left us direction, left us examples…have I said this yet, “This is divine legacy.”
Christianity, Legacy, Parenting Cancer, death, father, generations, grandfather, heritage, life
Wild, wild morning and it’s only 0545. I broke my pledge already; the one in which I committed myself to be writing, not blogging and emailing all day. But a sneaky peek at a blog post of a friend caught my attention. I am posting my response here. Actually on the “more” page.
Is this worth the use of precious posting time and cyber functionality? Yes. Because DEATH, not life, COMES FIRST. Right?
DO WE THINK OFTEN ENOUGH ABOUT DEATH AND THE LIFE THEREAFTER IT ENABLES?
I coulda watched “THE wedding” live. Didn’t, though beginning a new life together is an important bit of life. One must first accept death of the solo-self.
If you only have a few minutes, don’t waste your time reading my thoughts about what it will be like in the cyber world when I’m gone; how will they–or WILL THEY?!–announce and care about my leaving the net? You can read that in a minute. Good takeaway.
I want you to go–right now–to my friend’s short post A Pauper In The Court of The King There is a story of death honoring life out of the tornado tragedies (Faithful to the End, A Father’s Sacrifice).
Touching, no? Now you can read my comment about my own consideration about how the cyber world will treat my death (Hey, relax, it’s a long way off. Unless…) and what matters to me about that. It’s short, just click on MORE More
Dads and Fathering, Manhood, Rites of Passage, Uncategorized calling, character, Christian fathering, father, legacy, Rite of Passage
Well, friends, this is it; The Week.
Taylor’s father, Matt, and I have taken this manhood passage concept seriously. In the cosmopolitan, urbane western world, we’ve lost the value of bringing our sons across the manhood threshold, a largely symbolic event of a boy becoming a man. Because our culture has progressed (?) beyond such primitive ceremonies, we have regular reports from psychologists and we witness it on the large and small screens: we have a generation of boys, some of them fathers, who never stepped across the threshold.
We’ve been grooming Taylor all year. If you’ve visited GenDads much, you’ve seen various stages. The five day wilderness trek, the weekly Tuesday morning Bible study with Dad, the journaling, the “saturation week” with Taylor, Matt, Popi (me) on the deep sea fishing-glider flying-mammoth excavating-college campus missions fest-golfing venture.
Today is a different Tuesday. Dad and “T” ride horses out to a spot in the mountain forest for Taylor’s Quest. As a youth therapist, Matt deals with the fruit of boys who’ve never been shown the door or the passageway to it that distinguishes a boy from a man of God in the making. Matt will leave Taylor with his rifle, overnight camping gear, meal makings, horse hobbles, a Bible, journal, a book or two. And there are hand-scrawled probing questions therapist dad and “companion dad,” Popi, have offered as guides for his inner quest. We’ve been there. Often.
All this being noted back home, T’s four siblings grasp the extremis of this day and prayed touching prayers of compassion for their older brother last night. I suspect they’ll continue in wonder and worry the rest of the day…along with two generations of parents.
SHOULD I LEAVE YOU OFF THE HOOK and not ask you some of the questions Taylor will sort through? Like, “WHAT DO I NEED TO BECOME A TRUE MAN OF GOD?” We’ll post others for you tomorrow.
Character, Christianity, Dads and Fathering, Grandfathers, Legacy, Parenting, prayer father, grandfather, imprint, legacy, parenting, prayer
Post number two on praying for the children of your heart, of your legacy. Poke back to the last post. I just did, and I like it. Again. It’s short. Sets the tone. Pray for the sons and daughters of your life passionately, often, specifically. AND pray for yourself as the model they see. They do what they see, you know.
In my hotshot Navy flying days, the “gouge” (yes, it’s spelled right–”gowj”–a Navy insider term) would be whatever the acronym or the phrase or the ditty that was a mental hook used to shortcut to some pretty complex procedures. We even called the crib sheet for our endless book tests, “the gouge”. Ready for the prayer gouge my wife and I use daily for our children and grandchildren?
“P. E. B.” Nail that to the wall of your busy brain. The gouge becomes the routine you don’t even have to think about. Just do it. F.G.T: “flaps, gear, throttle.” Here’s the gouge for praying dads and granddads. Life gets a little busy, distracting. Still, you just gotta do it. FGT. Once, too much going on in the pattern, and didn’t do the gouge. Forgot the “G.” Big woops. Fortunately it was a private plane. No taxpayer dollars were harmed in the making of this life lesson. USE THE GOUGE.
Protection. “Oh, Father, these are dangerous days. Protect (name each one) from physical harm, from the damage the world, their friends, and themselves can bring to their spirits. Protect them from the enemy of their souls who would devour them as a roaring lion.”
Enablement. “Matt and Cari–me, too, Lord–need special grace, patience, insight to ‘raise them up in the way they should go.’ Enable us all to be worthy of being your first choice in shaping their lives to follow you.”
Blessing. “Like your friend, Jabez, dear Father, I ask you bathe (name each) with your blessing. Enlarge the territory of their influence that they will bless others in Your Name, and cause them neither to be harmed nor to harm that the world will be pleased with You through them.”
There it is: P.E.B. The whole of Psalms 37 is a perfect devotional to reinforce the protection, enablement, and blessing assured to those who follow after God.
AMEN. SELAH. SO BE IT. HALLELUJAH.
Boys and Girls, Christianity, Dads and Fathering, Generations, Grandfathers, leading, Legacy, Parenting children, father, fathering, following Christ, generations, godliness, grandfather, imprint, legacy, modelling, parenting
We talkers (keyboard and otherwise) too rarely discover the most enduring truths are expressed simply. 140 character Tweets are underscoring that. I’m liking Rick Warren’s these days. But this makes me think of Tuesday morning breakfast with soninlaw, Matt, and Taylor. It’s Friday. I’ve been mulling this one.
We read the very short section in 2 Kings 3 where King Joram illustrated a truth (with characteristic OT blood and gore mercifully without today’s visuals). Here it is expressed in two ways: “Like father, like son.” Then there’s my favorite, “They do what they see.” I’ve expressed that here before.
Why is Taylor working so hard to pitch hay bales for his horse?
SEE IF YOU AGREE WITH THE BIBLE AND TAYLOR More
Christianity, Dads and Fathering, Generations, Grandfathers, Hiking, Hunting, Manhood, Rites of Passage Cancer, children, dad, deer, father, fathering, generations, heritage, Hunting, Jesus, raising children
[Resending due to technical errors]
THE HUNTER RETURNS,
A MAN EMERGES
We interrupt this blog post with breaking news–And, yes, Jesus, as always, had some life-alterning things to say to me I’d like to pass on. But here is something as fresh as an hour ago. It’s news from the real life saga of a manhood year of passage for Taylor. We’ve taken this one from the pages of our Manhood Year Plan and the several “passage” books which support it.
The photo is a bit rough. Sun setting. We had to hustle to catch the light. Matt and Taylor back from Taylor’s youth hunt. His first. You can see the results. We were returning from a major medical event and Mom Cari called, told us we had to pull over and turn on our computer and Skype or we’d miss something big. She had heard Carolyn and I say we actually prayed for Taylor (and guide Dad) for his greenhorn hunt; safety, bonding, learning and…”Oh yeah, Lord, we’d sure love it if you’d give Taylor a good shot at one of those precious deer you’ve used to feed mankind for ages.” We pictured Venison at Thanksgiving. POPI DEALS WITH THE MONSTER
Boys and Girls, Christianity, Dads and Fathering, Generations, Grandfathers, Hiking, Jesus, Manhood, Parenting blessing, Christian, father, following Christ, journey, legacy, raising children, son, story
It wasn’t fair, really. Matt, the rowdy-kid therapist, had pulled the question from his bag of tricks. So, he thought of his answer before. And when he posed to Taylor and me that we had two questions to ask Jesus if He were to join us on the trail, we’d already hiked a couple of miles. More time to ponder.
IT’S LIKE WAR OUT THERE. HOW’M I DOING?
But when, out loud and in mock dialog, Matt asked Jesus, I was struck deeply. I’m still thinking hard on how my Lord would answer when I asked Him the same.
“Jesus, I’d really like to know, am I doing a good job?”
That’s it?! “Cheap, too simple,” I thought…until I imagined His answer for me. Still wondering. According to my new and brilliant doc, I’ve got “at least” five to seven good years with the advances to fight my Prostate cancer. You mean I won’t live ’til 90? Good! But it does beg the question. “Jesus, did I do a good job?”
As we chatted, intermittently while puffing hard up the steep trail, Matt added dimensions: Fathering, being a good husband, his long journey to being a competent therapist, being a good friend and brother and son. Then he added, “I mostly want to know if I am pleasing You by doing all I’ve done in Your strength or mine. I get those confused too often.”
MATT SHEPHERDING THE FAMILY
Let’s leave Matt, Taylor and me on that climb and turn it to you. So, YOUR TURN: “Jesus, did I do a good job?”
Dads and Fathering, Generations, Grandfathers, Hiking, Jesus, Manhood, Parenting, Rites of Passage Christian, father, God's Story, grand dad, legacy, raising children, son
HE’S WAITING JUST AROUND THE BEND
Friends and drop-ins alike, beware. Some stories out of your life venture can be addictive. I’m still talking, writing, and (mostly) thinking about Four Days of Manhood. That’s a new name for it. Comes from my reflections of four grueling/wonderful days up and down (mostly UP!?) the mountain with Matt and grandson Taylor(subscribers will know). Started out as a major event in T’s “rite of passage”.
But, it’s morphed.
As I look/think/write back, it was as much for Matt and me as it was for T. You ever have reflections where your heart…your heart…well, sorta “sings”? Well, mine sings like the chorus of a country song without the truck or the dog or someone else’s girlfriend. Words not fully formed bubble up and create that smile. Then the chorus plays again. Impressions more than words; “bonding,” “fun,” “pain,” “victory,” “laughter,” “memories,” “exhaustion,” “gratitude,” “discovery,” and then the verses, the story line. Like, “Thanks, so much, Jesus, for coming along. I was wondering if I could ask you…”
Boys and Girls, Dads and Fathering, Generations, Grandfathers, Rites of Passage children, father, God's Story, grand dad, imprint, legacy, raising children
No, it’s not that Taylor won again at Mario Cars, that’s a given. He’s 12+ and I’m 70. Not a chance. His six year old brother beats me two out of three. Worst yet? Taylor aces me, literally, at Skies of Vietnam in “real” F-4′s, joy stick and all. I shot down a MiG for real, but it doesn’t matter against a nimble-fingered Millennial.
TAYLOR ACES POPI
Where he aced me was in completing today’s blog. I’m writing a book, doing major doc visits, teaching, and behind in Honey-Do’s. I was using his slow response to recapping our generational passage on the mountain as my excuse to skip a post here. Then he tells me, in the kindest tone of unapologetic firmness–and quite well written, I should add:
“Hey, Popi, the WHOLE WORLD is waiting for me. HOMEschool means I don’t go home after school, I am home. And Mom never lets up. You made describing my impressions of our Big Hike sound like some small project. Unfortunately, this is not the email you had been hoping for! But, the good news is that Friday night I WILL give you my story as I see it, AND…(waaait for it), from now on every Friday night I will send you my writing project for that week.”
Gulp. Humbled in my place and smiling deeply all the while. He ain’t just a grandkid off doing something somewhere, he’s a young man with a full life of learning, growing, having fun, and fulfilling the role I pray for; a good, growing, walking with God in young but vigorous ways. AND staying connected.
Wouldn’t you smile deeply, too?
FROM GAME MIGS TO REAL ELK
TAYLOR ACES POPI
Dads and Fathering, Generations, Grandfathers, Manhood, Rites of Passage children, Christian, father, grandfather, Jesus, journey, legacy, son, spiritual thirst, story, thirst
Dehydrated and fat. That’s what they tell us. “They” being…well, I don’t remember for sure, I have a lot of cable news on in the background. America is dehydrated. We need about 20% more water than we drink. That makes us eat more. Calories instead of water = fat. Hey, we have wonderful pure water even without the plastic environmental hand grenades. I’ve been to more than one country where women walk round trip for five miles to bring back jugs of drinkable water…or those who simply drink from polluted sources, especially in huge urban ghettos. Five million children under five die from polluted water each year (weakening them for diariyah, AIDS, water-born disease).
“They” also tell us one of the reasons we are a fat nation and prone to diabetes is because we don’t drink enough. Water, that is.
This isn’t about that.
This is about the real-life drama on the mountain. More