There are so many things to love about this guy. He’s rugged, funny, smart, loves football and fishing and good scotch, can name nearly every tree in nature, reads theology books, can water ski and snow ski like a pro, likes classical music and Pearl Jam, and occasionally loses his temper. He’s edgy like that sometimes…..in a masculine, Jesus-and-the-money-changers sort of a way. He has huge biceps and makes you feel like he’d crush anyone who tried to hurt you…….all the things that make a girl go weak in the knees.
Yesterday, he saw our children and there friends throwing small matchbox cars in the pool. It was right after the Vols got beat so he was already a little ‘frustrated’, let’s say. He yelled…… they cried……I was bewildered. Today, as we pulled into the church parking lot, he put his right hand on my shoulder and gave me a little touch of affection. He asked the girls if they remembered the pool incident and they, of course, did. He told them that he was wrong to lose his temper and asked if we would forgive him. Elea said, “Yes, daddy, I forgive you.” The exchange was powerful. I can’t think of a better way to teach forgiveness to your children. The historic liturgy of the church is beautiful on this subject, and thank God we say and hear these words every Sunday;
“Lord we confess that we are by nature sinful and unclean and have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed by what we have done and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart and we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We justly deserve your present and eternal punishment. For the sake of Your son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us. Forgive us, renew us, and lead us, so that we may delight in Your will and walk in Your ways……Almighty God in His mercy has given His son to die for you and for His sake forgives you all your sins.”
Now, that is comfort. We fail. We screw up. We lose our tempers, get angry…. and He stands there waiting…..to forgive. It is a powerful force in any relationship, but especially in families. To forgive and be forgiven, what a gift from God! I am thankful for a man who is passionate enough to get angry and man enough to ask for forgiveness. He also just so happens to able to identify nearly every bird flying overhead and he can wind the bobbin on my sewing machine! I’m starting to feel so inadequate!