I don’t know if this makes me a bad dad or what, but there are times when I forget that Nathan is a person. It isn’t all of the time, but sometimes late at night when I am trying to get him to stop crying I find myself doing all of the things that you do to soothe a baby almost like I am trying to win at a video game. Sometimes when I focus in on getting the things done that I have to get done for him, I forget that he is more than something that needs to be figured out and maneuvered in the right way so I can get a moments peace. He is a real live human being.
I just went into his room because he was fidgeting a little and I wanted to head off the loud cry that would wake up Mommy if I could and looking at him there with his eyes open looking up at me I was struck again by how he isn’t just someone I am trying to keep from crying, he is my son.
I think that is an important lesson for me here at the end of VBS. In ministry many times I find that I am just trying to get a certain action from students. I am trying to get them to sit still or be good or sing or participate or whatever and I forget to check them out as people. The same is true about my youth ministry. I often find myself trying to get all of the little things done without remembering to focus in on my students as people.
The thing is I have a really great group of people. They are fun to hang out with. But sometimes with the whole craziness of being a youth pastor I forget to take time just to have fun with them. That is something that I need to remedy.