A Friday Paradox

A Friday Paradox

I love this word. Paradox.

In a conversation through this space about marriage, Evan Forester and I shared ideas on submission.  Wise Evan called up Paul’s words in his letter to the leaders in Phillipi and the whole concept also became relevant to TODAY’s current events (of all things).

Philippians 2 puts it:

“Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name…”


See the paradox?

Obedience requires strength.
Obedience gives power and strength.

Parenting requires obedience too.

Our glorious home life is filled with magnificent kids ranging in age from 7 – 23.  For some of these kids we are responsible to help them get their homework finished (ok, only the first grader).  From there, they get older and we exercise that muscle called LETGO.  We need to help teenage girl navigate (it’s an action verb) her cultural world of fun and drama, which are often in relative disproportion. And the college agers, now living at home for the summer, only technically need us to demonstrate strong and Godly life-management.

Those big ones: that’s harder job. And it sits squarely in the middle of this paradox.

The situation feels a little like Michael Jordan, being able to take delightful liberties in the game that only come after years of developing strict discipline of basketball’s basic skills. The privilege of life’s freedoms (spending time and money resources at our discretion) only comes after a dedicated growth of those resources through nose-grind-stoning and the earned rewards of [years of] hard work.  Partly, our parental job is to make sure we’re not becoming the obstacle to that lesson. The easier path is the exact way that ultimately harms their success.

I guess we don’t outgrow obedience.

Obedience Takes Strength. Strong Obedience to Godly instruction gives power that lives
and endures throughout generations.

Parenting Well: Not easy.

Like giving high schoolers permission to “blame” us when they need an excuse to say “no,” I think God will be okay if I just “blame” him for having to be firm.

Do you have big kids home for the summer?





  1. Beeka
    May 18, 2012

    “HA, HA, HA” Now that was a loaded question!!!!!

  2. Ray
    May 20, 2012

    Can you be bribed to do something, that you really want to do.

    Does it take submission, to receive a $2,000,000 donation, no strings attached?

    Is obedience distasteful? If I don’t steal from my neighbor, because I really like the neighbor, it that ‘obedience’ to the commandments, or is it love for my neighbor?

    Just some thoughts …

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *