Today is a special day for me. I have two children and both are graduating from high school today.
Where does the time go?
I remember that snowy day in March, when I first held my little five - pound bundles of joy, all wrapped up in pink and blue. It was the beginning of the grandest adventure; I was now a father.
The question most dads ask is, "What kind of father will I be?"
18 years later, my little blessings aren't so little. My son can easily whip me in a game of basketball. My daughter has biceps almost as big as mine from years of swimming.
The question I'm asking myself now is, "Are they ready?" Or more precisely, "Have I made them ready?"
I believe I've done all that I could to get them ready. Now it's up to them to use what I've given them - for better or worse. I'll always be their dad and I'll always pray for them and give them advice (when they ask for it). But now it's time for a little testing. It's time to inspect the first crop of fruit. Yesterday I saw a small sample.
My son was complaining of a painful big toe, which he injured playing soccer. He said it hurt pretty badly and wanted to know if one of us could get him healed. I looked at my daughter. She smiled and stepped forward. It was her time to shine and she knew what to do.
Before she laid hands on him, her brother said, "This is going be a real test for you, because I'm not joking, my toe is killing me. "
She placed her hand on his foot and spoke to the injury, commanding it to be healed.
It wasn't the most eloquent prayer. But with the grace available to a nervous teenage girl, amped on caffeine, she threw together a prayer she thought I'd approve of. Afterward she had him check it out. There was a little pain left, so she commanded it to leave a second time and he checked it out again. This time all the pain was gone.
My son walked around the house with a huge smile on his face the rest of the day. My daughter came over, gave me a high five and beamed with joy. I gave her a hug and told her she really did it. She asked if I was praying, too. I told her I wasn't. She believed me.
It's important for our kids to know that we approve of them. It's also important to set the right examples. They're going to imitate us more that we know.
Today I'll be at their graduation ceremony. They have a good start on their education but more learning lies ahead...and not all learning is equal.
What we learn in high school has a purpose. It's a foundation. We need to build upon it. The lessons of life will come and we must master them if we're to have a blessed life and be a blessing to others. Today I learned that my kids have a decent chance of achieving some pretty high goals, if they choose to pursue them. But it's their choice. All I can do is set examples and hope they follow.
I'm very proud of my kids, but they aren't just my kids, they're my disciples. I know God will do amazing things with them. We can all see good fruit and make disciples if we consider our ways carefully, do the most needed things and set examples for those who come after us. This is how disciples are made.