Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Being there

“Two are better than one. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls.” –Eccl. 4:9

As parents, perhaps the greatest thing we can do for our kids is to be there for them. No advice or words- just there beside them as they go through difficulty and trial.

My commute to work at Doulos each morning takes me about 2 minutes driving and 5 minutes if I walk through the woods. The other day I needed to drive for a meeting in town later. Half way to Doulos, I passed a car that was stuck in the ditch beside the road with an upset young lady standing by the car. A friend was helping her when I drove up. The car’s wheel looked partially bent from the ditch and the car wouldn't start.

I asked her name and she said “Bailey.” I asked her what happened and she said, “I went too fast around the curb last night and spent the night in the car.” I asked her if she called her parents. She said, “I called my mom and my dad and neither one of them would come help me.” I asked her where she was going last night and she said, “to see a friend right up the road.” I asked her if she’d called that friend. She said, “they aren't home.” My years at Shelterwood have taught me alittle about interrogation techniques with teenagers. I knew enough to know her stories weren’t lining up.

A friend came and helped pull me the car out of the ditch and jump-start the car. I reminded her that God loved her and would come to help her anytime she called on Him. She thanked us for helping and drove off.

Later I thought about Bailey and her uphill battle. How difficult it must be for her to hear about a Heavenly Father that is there for her when her earthy Father is absent. Of course, I don't know the whole story of her family. Perhaps her dad is ill or out of town. Maybe her mom is watching other kids at home. But I could tell from her demeanor that she was alone.

Sometimes, if we’re not careful, we can leave our kids alone. Granted, sometimes they need to be alone. There are times when the worst thing we can do is rescue our kids. There are appropriate times when they need to get their own car out of the ditch.

But more times than not, they need a loving parent there beside them. They need to be able to make the call and count on us to be God’s love to them through a difficult time. The “being there” isn't always geographical. Sometimes it can't be. But in the electronic world we live in, parents can be there with a loving voice and a listening ear.

I pray that Bailey has a safe and nurturing place to stay tonight. I pray that her mother and father will receive the greatest blessing possible by being a blessing to their daughter. And I pray that I will have eyes of compassion and ears that hear the call when my children need me.

As the Scripture says, two are definitely better than one, but only if one and one make two. Be there for your kids and God will use you as His example of love.

By Eric Joseph Staples ©

No comments: