When my wife and I were first married I can remember our many conversations about never wanted kids. I would justify our protest, saying things like,
We know we are too selfish to have kids.”
We enjoy our freedom too much.”
There were many other unspoken reasons why I personally didn’t want children, but it pretty much boiled down to selfishness, anger and fear.
Selfishness, because I was selfish. Anger because my wife and I had a broken sex life and I couldn’t imagine having the “burden” of a child while we couldn’t even enjoy sex. Fear because I was afraid of ruining the kid or my wife’s body changing or her using pregnancy as an excuse to let herself go, all of which were straight up foolishness. But then again I was a selfish little fool back then, so…
Fast forward eight years and my beautiful wife is about to give birth to our second child. And as I write about those past thoughts above I laugh a little to myself realizing how different I am today. I am excited to meet this little human (gender unknown).
What changed in me?
My heart towards children is night and day different in comparison to 8 years prior. In fact, now I desire lots of kids. You could even say I want a herd of children. Ok, maybe just a gaggle.
The Lord, as the Lord does, did a work in me. He changed my mind and heart on the issue of children, which is no issue. I was the issue. One day God he spoke to my heart and told me that if I wanted to know a new side of him I would have to trust Him and have kids.
It is easy for those that have had a father in their life to understand the father side of God. If you have had a mother in your life then you could understand the motherly side of God. If you have had good friends or have been a friend then you can understand the friend side of God. If you have had a brother then you could understand the brother side of God. But, as every parent has ever said since parents were invented,
When you have your own kids then you’ll understand.”
How can a person ever understand or experience the parent side of God until you are a parent? Ever since the Lord told me this, I have craved to know this side of Him.
When I was up in the middle of the night with my crying son I finally understood the compassion and long-suffering of a father. When I had to discipline my son I learned why the father has to discipline. Now that I am a father, I understand what unconditional love actually feels like. All my son ever did was be born and yet I loved him with an intensity that I have never experienced before. I am thankful that God took time to change my heart about being a father.
This new found love for the little wobbly humans doesn’t mean I’m that great at being a father, but I am figuring it out. Every moment I watch my son grow up I am learning how to be a father and more about my Heavenly Father.
This world needs less dads and more fathers. Anyone can be a dad, but it takes a real man to be a father.