Happy Spring! It’s the end of my spring break and the little bit of writing that has gone on in my head hasn’t made it to the keypad yet. And today is supposed to be a delicious 69 degrees. Gonna have a coffee date with a girlfriend, then a zoo date and sleepover with those grandest babies of mine which leaves little time for editing, but here’s an early morning quick bit of rambling. I suspect there will be some who have a harsh judgment against the way my husband and I parent but I’m okay with that.
Lookin’ For Love in all The Wrong Places
Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the LORD, and will bring you back from captivity. Jeremiah 29:12-14 NIV
The sidewalk was icy, the wind biting, and my mind was intent on getting to my car as quickly as possible. A myriad of to-do’s to accomplish during my lunch break were doing calisthenics in the remaining empty corners of my mind. But two men in a white van, parked in front of the school, called out to me for directions to another nearby school, breaking up my internal exercise program. I soon sent them off in what I hoped was the general vicinity of their desired location, but I really wanted to call after them with a disclaimer: Seriously, do you know who you are asking directions from? I mean, I give myself a high five when I find my car in the parking lot! But hey, good luck…enjoy Kansas…send a postcard…)
I do have an overactive imagination at times, and was scripting a “Bank Robbers Escape in White Van and Take Pygmy Hostage” newscast, when I glanced up from the slick pavement.
And discovered more fodder for the imagination.
A man appeared to be lurking, directly across the street from my Outback.
And he was staring in my direction.
I squinted at the trim, dark-skinned man wearing a beanie, and realized he appeared to be waiting for me. I hesitantly put one foot in front of the other, wishing he would move on. He didn’t.
A few seconds later, a grin erupted and I was glad he had stayed put.
It was an old family friend that Scott and I had attended church with years ago, who’d heard I was working at this school. We hugged and quickly tried to catch each other up on a few years of life. The conversation turned towards his daughter, and my six kids who had all grown into adulthood since we’d last visited, and it was with a bit of trepidation I told him: Our youngest – the only one still living at home – isn’t sure what she believes. And we don’t make her go to church with us, so some Sundays it’s just Scott and I. So different from the days when eight of us would pile into the van and fill a pew or two, I lamely finished, bracing for a bit of surprise or judgment, since both of our families had attended a rather legalistic church years ago.
There was none, not the slightest hint.
“You know, Marie, I totally agree with you. A blind faith is no faith, and it is better they question and find the truth for themselves rather than clinging to someone else’s beliefs,” he told me as I explained our reasoning. While it was encouraging to have someone in our corner, it wouldn’t have mattered if he disapproved or not.
Because I believe if we have done our parenting job correctly, our children will eventually question everything. Including us.
Sometimes, when our kids live out the things we’ve taught them, it is a beautiful thing to behold.
And other times, it can be downright messy, and unnerving.
Like when they question. When they seek for themselves.
It’s really what Scott and I have taught our children: never just take anyone’s word for absolute truth – even people you respect and admire can be wrong. We believe only Scripture is inerrant. So we can’t fault them when they question what WE have taught them (‘cause, yeah, we forgot to put that little asterisk and footnote about parents are ALWAYS right in our contract.)
I’ve been thinking a lot about not just my kids, but others I know who are seeking truth. I’m glad they are questioning things for themselves.
Questions beg answers.
In order to find something we must actually look.
And I’m reminded of an old Johnny Lee song, Looking for Love in all The Wrong Places.
It starts out like this:
Well, I spent a lifetime lookin’ for you
Single bars and good time lovers were never true
Playin’ a fool’s game, hopin’ to win
And tellin’ those sweet lies and losin’ again.
Reminds me a lot of people who claim to be “seeking the truth” about God. Sadly, they look to their contemporaries or secular Philosophy classes for answers, or they create their own god.
Playing a fool’s game, hopin’ to win. And tellin’ themselves those sweet lies again and again.
A comfortable but risky place to be.
An honest search for the truth about God and Jesus and creation means leaving behind the comfortable places and being willing to hit the dusty trail. Visit with people who love Him. Read the Bible or books like More Than a Carpenter by Josh Mcdowell, which outlines a brief argument of why Jesus must be either Lord, a liar, or a lunatic – there are no other options given the historical evidence of His existence.
I remember my oldest daughter, during a rebellious phase, told me “I want what you and dad have. But it just doesn’t work for me.” Of course OUR faith wasn’t gonna work for her. As a young adult, she had to pick up her own. And she eventually did, but we had to love her through her questions and doubts and messy searching.
My challenge to my children – and to anyone else who has been seeking – is if you are really searching for truth, begin by asking God to reveal Himself to you. Visit a Bible believing church or with someone you’ve seen live out the faith, and go ahead – ask questions.
And quit looking for Love in all the wrong places.
But if from there you seek the LORD your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart. Deuteronomy 4:29 NIV
Thanks for stopping by. I sure wouldn’t mind prayers that my kids who are searching find the Truth. And prayers for the James Holmes trial that starts next month.
Grateful for this wonderful life,
Marie with a :)