Sometimes sitting through a sermon series is an act of faith. That’s what I’ve been calling it the past few weeks anyhow, as I attend the summer series at my church. It’s on parenting. Because I am not a parent, each week, I go in faith, trusting that God has something to teach me, one who has no children.
Yes, yes—I know, I trust (hope? pray?) I am having some influence on the special children in my life. But it’s certainly not the same as having kids of my own.
So faith prods me to attend each week, reminding me that the service won’t be all about parenting anyway, because that’s just the message. And the service itself isn’t all about the message—it’s about Jesus. Worshiping Him in song, seeking Him in prayer, adoring Him with gifts, and learning His ways in the Word.
When it’s time for the message, in faith I ask God to water my soul and change my heart. I listen, because I want to know about loving on the kids in my life (10 special ones, in particular) or about being a better kid (I have parents) or about supporting the parents in my life (friends and family both). And I want to know of God’s heart, how He parents me, His child, with such grace and mercy.
From this perspective, a series on parenting is quite applicable, even to me, a nonparent.
I imagine that being a parent is sort of like being an NFL quarterback. The moment you step into the action, you are sure to get all sorts of criticism and advice and sighs dumped at your feet, by people who won’t feel the anxiety or the pain from the snap-decisions needed to do the job.
I don’t want to be a parental analyst, assessing all the action safely from my armchair—I want to be the one rallying the spirits of the parents who are giving their all in the midst of tiring and chaotic circumstances. I don’t want to merely point out the gaps in coverage—if I see something that needs some attention, I want the courage to get involved and fill the space with God’s love.
Sounds good, right? Good game plan. But I have no. clue. how to do this.
Looks like I have plenty to learn from the summer series after all.
Endnote: If you are a parent or if you have parents or if you are human, these messages are for you! Listen to the series here.