OK…if you’ve been following this series of posts then we are about to hit the last three things, if not then you can catch up here and here
#5 - God has a plan for your life
In this part of the message I covered…
- That I am a Clemson fan…as all God’s children are—and that mommy is an FSU fan—and that we should pray for her! :-) Really though…she can pull for the team she chooses!
- Seriously, I told her that Lucretia and I both have preferences and dreams…but that OUR desire for her is that she pursue GOD’S plan for her life and not ours.
- I have seen so many parents try to live their lives through their children…the dad pushes the son to excel in sports, the mom pushes her daughter to enter the beauty contest…and the kid doesn’t want to do it…and when they try to talk to the parents they are made to feel guilty about not wanting to be all that the parent wants them to be. (And then the parent wonders when the kid becomes an adult why they never come back around!)
- I have seen parents manipulate their children…say things like, “If you will go to college and major in BLANK then I will pay for it—but if you major in that other thing—then you are on your own!” The problem with that is—what if “that other thing” is EXACTLY what God wants them to do?
- I understand that before Charisse was my daughter—she was God’s daughter. Ultimately she belongs to Him…I am merely a steward. AND I do not want to get in the way of HIS plans for her life.
- My job is not to dictate her future—but to teach her to fall in love with Jesus, listen to His voice…and then trust He will speak as clearly to her as He speaks to me.
- Jeremiah 29:11 tells us all that we are not an accident—He has a plan for her life—and I want her to embrace it!
#6 - I will always love you.
Some points from this section were…
- I told a story of when my dad bought a brand new 1974 bug and brought it home and began to do some work on it. While he was working he happened to hear REALLY loud noises coming from the front of the car. We he walked around there he saw me with a hammer and I was beating the snot out of his new car!!!
- NOW…he didn’t say, “Oh my—Perry is doing something wrong BUT I cannot correct him because, in doing so, I might damage his self esteem!” Trust me—he damaged my self esteem! I knew that beating the bug with a hammer was wrong when our “special time together” was over. He corrected me…BUT…
- HE NEVER STOPPED LOVING ME! He showed me why I was wrong—but did not say, “I am no longer your father…I don’t love you anymore because you did something stupid!” NO—after the correction he continued loving me—and growing up he OFTEN told me how much he loved me.
- Dads…you cannot tell your children “I love you” enough. Trust me—in working with children and teenagers for so long—one of the number one fears that they have is messing up so bad that their parents eventually hate them! (I literally had teens tell me their parents were going to hate them because of a bad grade!)
- A kid needs to be corrected—BUT also needs to know he/she is loved. Speeding tickets—car wrecks—putting the cat in the microwave—WHATEVER—dads, we need to ALWAYS communicate to our kids that there is NOTHING they can do to make us stop loving them!
- One more thing—I am sick and tired of the men who refuse to do this because “their daddy didn’t do this for them.” BE A MAN—tell your kids you love them—A LOT!!!
#7 - Heaven Is Real—Be There!
And finally—some thoughts here were…
- I know child birth is going to be a little crazy…and coming home with a baby is going to be both exciting and scary. But…
- I shared with my daughter that the first chance I had when we got home—I took her upstairs and sat down in a rocker with her and told her about Jesus. I knew she could not understand—but I wanted the first intimate daddy/daughter moment in our home to be me sharing Christ with her.
- I told her that everyday since I found out that she was on the way that I have prayed for her salvation. I want to see her know, love and serve Jesus all of her life—and there is NOTHING that will excite me more as a father to see her know her heavenly Father.
- It is my job as a father to be ready to share the Gospel with my daughter when she begins to ask questions.
- Parents—Dads—when is the last time you prayed to the Lord and asked Him to draw your child to Him, to save them, to make them a new person?
- When I get to heaven the first person I want to see is Jesus! BUT…we will have eternity to stroll around…and in that time I want to see my mother, friends and so on—but I told Charisse, “More than anything else in the world…I want to see you there…and I will wear myself out and search every corner of heaven until I find you!!!”
That’s it—it was a VERY emotional service for me…and I can’t wait to be a dad!!!