Let Go and Let God… or something like that

Man praying in churchIn my last post I talked about Millennials, and the perceptions many of them hold about the church. As a balance it is only fitting that we Boomers take stock in how we communicate our love and concern for the things of God to those we love…our children. As the adage goes, it can be hard to “let go and let God” have control. We often want to “fix it.” It has been a tough lesson for me to learn (still learning) and one that I do address in my own story, Go Ask Your Mother… A Father’s Story.

At a recent performance of my story in Southern California, I was privileged to hear from a parent that was able to come to terms with this very struggle:

“Chuck gave a perfect testimony of what the reality is of parenting and spiritual guidance. I came away realizing my (God-given) responsibility to guide my son needs to be tempered by his own individual walk with Christ, not by my worry to see his bottom firmly seated in a pew each Sunday, or chasing around with a youth group. Neither appeals to him at the moment and I KNOW forcing a teenager to go to church will not bring him closer to God. I also know I don’t want him to be the prodigal son returning after wreaking havoc on himself…so Chuck’s stories sent me home feeling encouraged to give my son some space and just talk with him right now rather than be heavy-handed. I did go home to have a short chat with him about it. He expressed that he does pray, and he likes our church…he doesn’t want to try other churches. So, my husband and I need to pray on it and listen for what the Spirit guides for encouraging growth in the boy. Ooops. Young man.  Chuck’s message was heard at our home and the timing, of course, was PERFECT. If I’m the only parent who came away from that message encouraged and not pushing away one teenage boy…it was worth his travel from Oregon and I thank him.”

As a parent of 3 boys I have lived the story this parent shares x3. As I say repeatedly when I share my story, “these stories aren’t finished yet… there is hope!”

New Show Premier, Friday, October 25th

Go Ask Your Mother…A Father’s Story is the second presentation of my “life stories.” In this presentation I tackle fatherhood, sharing lessons I learned from my father and some of the joys, humor, and trials of raising three sons of my own. You’ll hear stories of kids embarrassing their parents, stories of rebellion and reconciliation, and unfinished stories of hope rooted in a father’s love for his kids. Much is written today about kids raised in the church, only to abandon the faith when they leave home. I share my own experience with this troublesome issue. Raising kids is not for the faint of heart and you will identify with this father’s confessions of struggles, uncertainty and hope for the future.GoAskMother_txt


If you are reading this you are invited to the premier performance of this presentation.

Date: Friday, October 25th

Time: 7:00 PM

Place: Liberty Christian Church, 4764 Skyline Rd S. Salem, OR 97306

Tickets: FREE

There will be a “talk-back” session after the performance where you can ask questions and give feedback about the performance.

We are also accepting bookings for this production beginning in 2014. Contact us at info.mastersimage.com for details and availability!

The Child Who Wouldn’t Accept “No”

“Daddy, can I have some ice cream?”ID-10010052


“Daddy, can I have some ice cream?”

“I said NO!”

“Please, Daddy, can I have some ice cream?!”

Can you relate?  We have all been there…probably on both sides.  I’ve been that kid who wears down the parent, and the parent who is worn down by the kid.  Sometimes it’s easier to give in than fight the battle.  But if you’re saying “no” for the child’s good, for health, or discipline,  or just not wanting to deal with a child on a sugar high…those reasons…you give in but feel guilty.  Show of hands?

But what if the child was persisting not for selfish reasons, but for the good of another? What if the child was “nagging” you from a heart of love and compassion?

I saw just that recently.  As you may know, I partner with the Christian relief and development organization, World Vision. After my performances I offer an opportunity for people to make a difference by sponsoring a child. Those who are interested meet me at a table afterwards where they can select a child to sponsor. It was at the table that I met Maria.

Maria made it to the table before I did and was holding a picture of a little girl from El Salvador.  “I want her,” Maria says.

“That’s great!” I say to Maria, who looked to be about 7 or 8 years old. “Is your Mom or Dad here?  You will have to ask them.”

“We’re from there,” Maria says.

“You’re from El Salvador? That’s awesome!”

Maria takes the picture folder and disappears into the crowd of people mingling in the foyer after the service. I visit with others at the table but also keep one eye tracking Maria. I spot her talking to what appears to be her mother. A few minutes later, her mother is escorted to the table by Maria.  She watches as her mother asks me questions about sponsorship, how much it costs, and what the sponsorship does.

“We’ll have to ask your father,” she says and then lays the picture folder on the table and goes back into the crowd.

Maria snatches the folder back up and ducks away again. A child on a mission.

A few seconds later I spot her showing the folder to her dad.  Dad is shaking his head “no.” Maria turns away. I am visiting again with more people but watch as her dad approaches the table and firmly sets the folder on the table and walks away… very much a “that settles that” sort of feeling.  I continue to visit with others at the table.

Children in El Salvador show me their art work - World Vision Trip 2006

Children in El Salvador show me their art work – World Vision Trip 2006

I turn back to see that the picture folder from El Salvador is once again missing from the table. Across the room I spy Maria showing the folder to an older couple and a few minutes later she has dragged them over to the table.  The couple is Maria’s grandparents.  Delightful people who share with me a bit about how they moved here from El Salvador and also share that they already sponsor a child with World Vision.  They would love to see this child sponsored but can’t do it themselves and confirm that Dad has said no.

I look down at Maria, “I’m sorry Maria, maybe next time.”

“But I want her!” she says.  With that she once again grabs the folder and disappears into the crowd.  I go back to helping others at the table who are signing up to sponsor children.

A few minutes later I look down to see Maria once again at the table beaming a big smile back at me.  Mom is beside her filling out the information to sponsor the child.  Dad is nowhere in sight.

Maria’s persistence won! I don’t know if dad agreed or if mom just decided to do it anyway, and deal with the consequences later.

You could debate that the parents caved and gave in to the child. Or that the parents were being stubborn and should have said yes sooner. Maybe they could plead guilty on both counts.

I like to think that love won. I am pretty sure that at least two children will be better for it… and have a sneaking suspicion that probably mom and dad will too!

Would you like to say “yes” to a child in need?  You can easily do so here by clicking here!

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