Saturday, October 23, 2010

Good Parents

And he said to them, “Which of you who has a friend will go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves, for a friend of mine has arrived on a journey, and I have nothing to set before him’; and he will answer from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed. I cannot get up and give you anything’? I tell you, though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of his impudence he will rise and give him whatever he needs. And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” Luke 11:5-13

As a parent of grown children, I often wonder if I did everything I could to bring them up well and give them everything they needed - within reason. I am not one for babying children or "treating them like veal" as one of my dear friends remarks. I also love my children dearly and would do anything for them. My heart soars when they achieve and aches when they are hurting. There are no perfect parents and I am barely a good parent. It helps me to remember that God is the good parent, willing to supply our need before we ask, not a spoiling parent, but one who loves us more than we could know.

The disciples were learning how to pray. And Jesus taught them the prayer we now call the "Lord's Prayer". A simple recitation of the goodness of God and of our need to be fed, forgive and be forgiven. How often we forget to pray and to ask God for what we need,and instead count upon our own might and our own strength. When it fails we learn to pray fast. Parents learn to pray out of desperation and necessity often and our surprised by God's goodness despite themselves.

So today I will pray and count on the goodness of God. Some days, that all there is to do. Some days, when we can't see forward and have used up all our tools, then we rely completely on God. Today I want to rely completely on God.

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