As Father's Day draws nearer with every passing minute, my mind is cluttered. A traffic jam of barely-related musings blare loudly, competing for my attention. Try to keep up.
It seems to me that people often adopt a unique sense of entitlement around holidays. This phenomenon perplexes me most when I observe it in christians, who are supposed to walk in an attitude of humility and thankfulness. Most Sundays, believers show up to church professing that they deserve nothing but damnation, and yet on holidays we find ourselves stamping our feet in anticipation of what we are owed. These two attitudes cannot be reconciled. We cannot embrace the world's notion of what we "deserve" without cheapening the depth of grace.
As I come to terms with my monumental mistakes, I have tried my best to continually embrace a mindset of gratitude for my life. On Father's Day, I look back and realize that I am truly blessed beyond words to even be a part of my family's life anymore. Every day that I arise to the sound of my children's voices, I have been given a gift that is absolutely priceless. I want to retain this perspective forever.
My wife and I have resolved to not conceal this part of our marriage's history from our kids. Though it would be simple to bury this from their view considering how young they are, this is not our desire. My sincere hope is that they would be able to understand and even benefit from the trials and tests we've overcome.
This is a lofty goal, I know. I spend many mornings contemplating one simple thought: "How can I stop my children from hating me when they grow up?" In all honesty, I fear that my errors will one day cause a rift in my relationship with my daughters. I recently finished reading Wild At Heart by John Eldridge, and he spends much of his book describing how parents often leave their children with a hidden wound that warps their outlook on the world.
I believe that not all parents screw up their kids, but it certainly seems that healthy parental relationships are tragically rare. Wounded people pass down legacies of hurt to their children, who often turn around and continue the pattern in the future. I want so desperately to break the cycle, to cast off the surname of disappointment that has cursed humanity since our common father Adam fell into sin. This is why we are going to be honest with our daughters.
We're leaving a trail. One day, my children will hear my songs, read this blog and know the depth of my fall and the mercy that rescued me. Until then, I pray for the strength and clarity of purpose to raise them in a way that proclaims virtue over my past.