Posts Tagged: God’s Love

Sorrows & Grief

Tonight as I was snuggling with my two year old son, Landon, & we were going through our usual routine, “Daddy snuggle me just 2 more minutes,” and ultimately me conceding at least once or twice, the thought suddenly popped into my head,

“How am I going to handle it when a girl someday breaks this kids heart?”

Random! I know!

But there it was, a dreadful thought! I began to remember when I got my heart broken. I was a Sophomore in college, I got a phone call, if there is such a thing as “Dear John” phone calls that was it…I was dumped. I didn’t see it coming & I was heart broken. It was close to 1 a.m., but one of the first things I did was call my parents. My mom answered, I could tell I woke-her-up. “Mom,” I sputtered, “Chad what’s wrong?” “Mom, (Name withheld for protection since this individual may never want to admit to dating me:)) just broke-up with me!” I said through sobs.

Landon is two, he won’t even date for 15 years, but I found myself saddened at just the thought of that potential call.

And maybe it’s because I’m a preacher, but everything turns into a Spiritual nugget; & this was no exception.

Because while I was pondering and sorrowing over my two year old son’s future heart break at the hands of some woman whom fails to see how awesome he is! 🙂

This text popped into my mind,

“He is despised and rejected by men, a Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.” –Isaiah 53:3

And suddenly I understood it differently.

In the past I have seen this sorrow and this grief directly related to the emotional and physical torment Jesus personally went through on this earth; and maybe that is still what this text is primarily saying.

But tonight as a Dad worrying about his son’s hypothetical heartbreak and the ensuing phone call I will receive at 1 in the morning, I saw Jesus as sorrowful and grief stricken because He loves me so much that every hurt I have, He intimately felt and feels.

Before I had kids I never saw anything sorrowful or even painful about the life of a toddler. Now my heart hurts when I see my kids wounded physically and emotionally. I’m a man of sorrows & acquainted with the griefs of toddlers because I love them so much!

And one day if we are still on this planet, I will be sorrowful & grief stricken for pre-adolescent children, and then I will feel the sorrow & grief of teenagers, I will feel the sorrow & grief of getting dumped…not because I’ve been dumped…but because I have a son that has received that “Dear John” phone call.

Jesus loves me more than I love my kids, no wonder He is a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; when my heart breaks, His heart breaks.

My Mom got me through that phone call, but I later learned that when she hung-up her and my Dad shed a few tears of their own.


Because that is the essence of loving parents, our sorrow is their sorrow, our grief is their grief.

Our sorrow is His sorrow. Our grief is His grief.

Val Kilmer & I

So I’ve been told a lot in my life that I look like Val Kilmer (I’m hoping the Val Kilmer of the Top Gun days!). If you know me well, you probably already know this little fact. Now I am not saying that I think I look like Val Kilmer, I’ve never claimed that, this is just what I have been told.

The first time I can remember being told I looked like Val (after so many years, we’re on a first name basis) was my Sophomore year in Academy by the Peach sisters. It has only escalated since then, in fact now 18 years since that thought was first expressed I still receive the occasional “Val” reference.

So why am I telling you this? To share a quick lesson I’m learning as a parent and as a pastor. Due to the fact that I have been called Val and asked if I look like Val, and even gawked at as if I were the real Val so often, I began to learn lines from Val Kilmer movies I could deliver:

“I don’t like you because you’re dangerous.” –Top Gun

“You can be my wingman anytime.” –ibid

“I’m your huckleberry. That’s just my game.” –Tombstone

“Why Johnny Ringo.” –Tombstone

“You’re no daisy.” –Tombstone

And of course the Val Kilmer pursed lips and stare…

What is the point?

Because people were always asking me if I knew I looked like Val Kilmer, I felt the need to start delivering Val Kilmer lines. To get into Val Kilmer character…

I have discovered with my kids and even in my relationships with folk as their pastor, that in both cases the more I treat and talk to my kids or members as I believe God sees them and less as they may actually be, that eventually they begin to take on this character. If we affirm people even when they may not be quite there, I believe they are more likely to take on the character we are affirming than to go back to whom they may be or may have been.

Isn’t this after all what God has done with all of us?

God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did;” –Romans 4:17b

And didn’t Jesus say, “No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends,” –John 15:15a

“Friends”, even though if you keep reading in the book of John the disciples kept acting like servants.

God calls each of us as He sees us, not as we actually are. I pray that in my life and I pray that in your life you will do the same for your kids and for any others you have influence over!

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