Appreciate all your comments in the previous post. As you read for yourself, views on how the gift of tongues operates are extremely varied. I’ll try to revisit this soon. Promise.
But tonight I’m sitting in a hotel room in Chattanooga, Tennessee the night before I give my oldest daughter away in marriage. This is a first for my wife and me. All the typical thoughts have flooded my mind—Where did the time go? Didn’t we just bring her home from the hospital terrified that we wouldn’t know what to do? Wasn’t she just holding her “maid-of-honor new-baby-sister” while still in diapers? Kindergarten was just last week, right? We just watched her get baptized, didn’t we? Wasn’t yesterday when she went on her first youth group retreat? Can this really be her first prom? Didn’t we just cry when we dropped her off at college? And on and on.
When I was younger, I thought those kind of comments were quaint conversation-fillers when old people gathered. But here I am. Pensive. And old.
And even stranger for me is thinking that some day Rachel will have those same kind of thoughts.
I have long told my girls that my primary job as their dad was simply to make the transferring of my fathering of them to their heavenly Father as seamless as possible…and that He would do a far better job than me. All of us know the huge effect our dads had on our view of God; that’s Spiritual Psych 101.
I guess the largest part of Christianity is learning how to let go, isn’t it? How to hold life loosely. How to die to yourself. It seems to me we squeeze the life out of everything we hold tightly.
I’m convinced my most holy moments were the times I liked the least, when I had to...
—let go of my need to be right.
—die to the idea that I know how to run my universe better than God.
—not blow my own trumpet.
—let go of money when I thought I was the one who needed it.
—zigged left when the world zagged right.
—swallow my pride.
—trust my Father more than myself.
—not worry about looking stupid.
—learn how to die.
—pick up my cross.
Okay, I know this all sounds a little morose for a prewedding post, but there is a tenderness to all this. And remember, I did say these are the most holy moments.
And I couldn’t be happier for Rachel.
In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal. (John 12:25 The Message)