Welcome to the World, 19 Years Later

Dean, Brent, and me at Brent’s high school graduation, June 1, 2018

 

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father . . . – James 1:17 NIV

 

Nineteen years ago today, our first grandchild was born. And a new chapter opened up in our lives, a chapter filled with joy and hope and life and wonder.

Today I sit back and remember. . . .

 

July 7, 1999

The sky glowed golden at sunset the day before you were born. A little after three in the morning, your Aunt Jaime announced from the bedroom doorway, “The baby’s on its way! The baby’s on its way!” When I called the hospital four hours later, your mommy told me you had arrived.

Brent Michael Huey. Our first grandchild. Seven pounds, six ounces of pure joy. I’d forgotten. Life has a way of throwing enough curve balls that we forget what it’s really all about. I’d built a wall around my heart to shut out the disappointments, grief, frustrations – and all the pain living in this world brings.

But that wall also shut out the joy and the love. Oh, I smiled and said I was doing good, even great, when people asked me how I was. But in reality, deep down inside, I felt little emotion.

When I knew you were here, Brent, that old wall just crumbled. Just your name is enough to bring tears of joy. But, oh, when I saw you! When I held you for the first time, you never even woke up for the whole hour and a half. As you slept soundly, I gently rocked you in my lap, one hand supporting your floppy little neck and the other beneath the blanketed bundle of you.

As I watched all those little baby faces you made, I dreamed of sitting in the rocker with you on my lap and reading to you; of walking with your little hand in mine and showing you all the wonders of God’s creation – a rainbow, a sunset, a snowflake; of feeling your little arms around my neck and inhaling your sweet baby smell. The Big Dipper isn’t big enough to contain the love I feel when I look at you!

Maybe that’s why God painted the sky golden the evening before you entered my world – to remind me where life’s treasures really are – and they aren’t in how well I write, how much money I have in the bank, how many awards I’ve collected, how clean my house is, or how little I weigh.

Life, my little grandson, is loving and giving and caring and sharing – and stopping by the roadside to enjoy a golden sunset.

Welcome to the world, Baby Huey. . . .

 

July 7, 2018

Today, Brent, we celebrate your birthday and tomorrow your high school graduation.

Oh, the young man you’ve become!

Over the years, Grandpa and I have been blessed to sit at countless baseball games, watch in pride and wonder as, in your senior year, you played varsity football. You’d decided to go out for football only a few months before the season started, yet you worked hard – and was elected one of the team’s captains. And then when the season was over, you signed a letter of intent to play college football.

We are so proud of you.

We’ve prayed you through illness and injury, fevers and broken bones, and when life’s path took directions you hadn’t planned or wanted.

Yet look at you. You’re smart, kind, compassionate, generous, caring, giving, hard working . . . and, no, I’m not partial at all.

Never stop dreaming, Brent-o. Never stop going after those dreams. For God has placed them in your heart. And He will give you the strength and endurance, patience and persistence, to achieve them.

Today the road of life stretches before you. Step with confidence and faith. Believe in the person God is making you to be.

Grandpa and I will be cheering you on, praying for you, loving you as always.

Welcome to the world, Brent Michael Huey. Oh, the places you’ll go!

 

Thank you, God, for this grandson – bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh – who reawakened love and joy in my life-beaten heart when he was born and has continued to do so to this day. Bless him and guide him as he follows the path You have laid out for him. Amen.

Read and meditate on Psalm 139:13-18.

© 2018 Michele Huey. All rights reserved.

Setting the Bar

why father doesn't see kids

“Abba, Father, all things are possible for you.”–Jesus, as quoted in Mark 14:36 ESV

For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”  ­–Romans 8:15 ESV

When my brother Pete was in high school, he was returning home after a date when he ran into a stone wall. Now, it wasn’t a tall, stone-and-mortar wall, but a short wall built with stones laid one on top of the other. The car didn’t have much damage to it. After all, it was a 1957 Oldsmobile made of steel. In other words, it was a tank.

My brother woke my father up with the words, “Dad, I need you.”

Why I remember this incident after more than 54 years, I have no idea. But the words, “Dad, I need you” were imprinted indelibly on my mind.

I’ve been thinking about fathers and the roles they play in our lives. And about God as our heavenly father.

Your perception of God as your father is influenced by your own relationship with your earthly father. That’s why people who experienced abusive fathers or have had a bad relationship with their earthly fathers have a difficult time comprehending God as their father.

God set the bar for fathers. Let’s look into His Word to see what He has to say about His role as our father.

First of all, Jesus called Him “Abba Father” – a term designating a close, intimate relationship. It translates “Daddy” and gives us a glimpse into the Father-Son relationship of the first two Persons of the Trinity.

But did you know that believers can also call God “Abba Father?” The Holy Spirit dwelling in us seals our adoption as sons and daughters of God. (see above two verses)

OK, enough preaching. Let’s look at what a father does.

First of all, a father provides. Food, clothing, shelter, guidance, wisdom. God provided for the children of Israel as they trekked through the wilderness: water from rocks, manna from heaven, and when they wanted meat, quail. He guided them with the pillar of fire by night and the cloud by day. When it stopped, they stopped. When it moved, they moved.

God continues to provide for His children today. “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).

How has God provided for a specific need of yours?

Second, a father helps. Like my father did when my brother woke him up in the middle of the night, God will answer when we call to Him. In fact, He invites us: “Call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me” (Psalm 50:15).

How has God helped you in your day of trouble?

Third, a father disciplines. Discipline is not always punishment, although punishment may be part of discipline. Its purpose is to train us to live right, to strengthen us, to make us into the persons God wants us to be. “My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline and do not loathe His reproof; for the LORD disciplines those He loves, as a father the son in whom he delights (Proverbs 3:11–12).

How has God’s discipline made you a better person?

And finally, a father loves. Sacrificially (John 3:16), unconditionally (Romans 5:8), steadfastly (Psalm 36:5), and eternally (Psalm 136:1).

When I read Zephaniah 3:17, I see God as a father standing over the crib of His child, watching him sleep; holding him close and soothing him, softly crooning a lullaby.

You, child of God, are that child.

 No matter how faithful or unfaithful our earthly fathers are, God, thank You for being the kind of father each of us needs. Amen.

 Read and meditate on Zephaniah 3:17:

“The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”

© 2018 Michele Huey. All rights reserved.