Letters to Holden and Nolan

HN Sam's babysittingLittle Goofballs…

I haven’t written you for a while.  Sometimes I get really busy with important things that need to be handled.  That’s kind of the way it’s been for the past few months.  I’m really sorry.  I’ll try to do better.

For some reason, I woke up this morning thinking about you guys.  Maybe because we had such a great time together the other night at Chili’s.  I can’t believe how much fun you guys have going to the bathroom!  Maybe next time we can just ask them to set up a table for us in there, instead…

I want to give you a little lesson in theology this morning.  It’s a lesson I have learned over the course of my lifeand one I am still learning about even right now.  Theology is all about what we know about God.

I love listening to you pray to God at meal times and I’m still pretty blown away that both of you can say the Lord’s prayer.  Your daddy and Uncle Corey couldn’t come close to saying it at your ages!  I know you say your prayers at night with your mommy and daddy and you ask God to take care of the ones you love and you thank Him for the great things in your life.

I love watching your faith grow like a little seed in the ground grows.  But it won’t always be this simple and childlike.  It won’t always be easy to simply believe in God.  There will come a time when you get older and smarter and you begin to think deeper thoughts about the way people act and the things that happen in the world.

And the trusting faith you have right now will probably get pretty complicated, and even confusing.

Life is full of bad things that happen.  Things that will make your little hearts hurt and you’ll cry because you don’t understand why those things had to happen the way they did.  Here’s where your theology lesson comes in…

People tend to fall into one of two groups when they have to deal with really bad things that happen.  The first groupand by far the biggest groupbelieves that since really bad things happen, there must not be a God at all.  They think that if there was really a God, he would have stopped the bad thing from happening.

The other group that people fall into is the group that says, “No matter what, God is in control.”   They say that no matter what bad thing people have to go through, it is because that is what God wants to happeneven if we can’t understand why, God has his reasons and we need to trust Him that He knows what is best.  

I’ve always had a problem with that second group and the way they think.  It’s almost as if they are saying that God is the one making the bad things happenthat since He’s in control of everything and He’s our great and powerful Father in heaven (which I totally believe), He must have a reason for wanting, and even making those bad things happen.  

I guess I’ve just come to think that there will always be some mystery to why things happen.  Things we will never understand.  Bad things that just look and feel painful and even senseless.  So rather than asking God why those things had to happen (and even letting myself believe that He was the one behind the bad stuff, making it happen), I choose to focus on what I know for sure.

No matter what, the Bible is totally clear that God is good.  God is good every moment of every day.  He can be trusted.  He will never, ever leave you or turn His back on you guys.  He is consistent.  He never changes.  He promises to give you the strength to handle any bad thing you will ever have to face.  And He will always welcome you backeven if your doubts and fears get the best of you and you get mad at Him or grow distant.   And they will sometimes.

And best of all, He promises to bring good out of every bad situation for those who love Him and trust Him.  I don’t know everything about how all of that works, but I know it’s true.  It has been for every day of my lifeand it can be the same for you guys, too.

That was some pretty deep stuff for today.  Next time we’ll have some bathroom conversation.

Be wise, grasshoppers.  Love, Papi.

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