Dr. Seuss is internationally acclaimed for his life time dedication to the imaginative and understood world of children. I can appreciate this. Personally, I love children. The innocence of a child is something that is both profound and amazing. But we overlook the value of children and their inherit worth. We don’t see what Jesus saw when He said: “let the children come to Me and do not hinder them…”
The more I think about love, the more I realize I have been looking at it the wrong way. Maybe it is just God pressing things into my heart, or maybe I’m just paying attention to more important things. As adults, we falter so much in love because we stop seeing the end in the beginning, but only focus on now. Someone told me a simple question that has revolutionized my approach to romance: as I think about it, approach it, and write it. Here it is…
Would you be proud to have a daughter [son] exactly like her [him]?
How often do we like to justify bad behavior in an attempt to strain out the good in people? I am bad about this in general because I want to find the best in every one, but this question allows me to objectively side step my hopes for who people should be in light of who they are: “yes, you may be an alright woman, but I would not like my daughter to be like you, no thanks.” (that may be a little harsh though, and I’d tell them another way because I’m not a dick).
The chances are good that marriages will produce children, and children will be a mixture of both parts: what they are taught, and who the parents were before the children were born will define the child. This perspective allows us to differentiate between characteristics that are not acceptable and habits that seem annoying at the time, but may be good in the long run. The more I consider this simple question the more I realize what I want from my life and myself. I want to know I am giving my children the absolute best that I am able.
Not only is this good practical advice, but I think it is good Biblical advice as well. it isn’t the only thing we ought look for when we approach another person, but it allows us additional clarity to do the right thing. Not only does it fit what God wants from marriage and what is healthy, but challenges me to become a better man: to work with those in my life with justice and kindness and honors, and deal with everything appropriately.
This has been one of many thoughts recently, but there is more depth then I am willing to go into: half because I have been waiting and thinking, and half because I have been writing, and half because a friend posted “Wait for Me” by Rebecca St. James on facebook and it took me back 2002 (yes, there are three halves, get over it!!). To honor and follow God means that we must be able to filter through the static and hear His voice, to understand what love is and who we choose to allow in our lives, and what He wants from us if He calls us to this path. Push away the world’s perception and corruption of love and return to the innocence and purity of it.