“It’s just so frustrating. Why doesn’t he respect me? He used to, when he was little. Then I could do no wrong. Why, every day he’d be singing my praises. ‘My dad’s the greatest! He can do anything!’ But now? There are times we don’t even speak.” The father wheeled his chair over to the desk.
“Yes, I see what you mean,” his secretary answered. “And the funny thing is, it’s not like you don’t know all about him. You can read him like a book, can’t you? Did you need that file?”
“Yes, thank you. You’re right. I do know my son inside out. I know what he needs before he asks. I love him so much. I’m fully aware when he needs new shoes. I know full well when he needs a new coat….but, even so, I still wish he’d come and ask me for them. You know? He takes me for granted. He doesn’t realize how I know his every mood. I know him backwards, forwards and inside out, yet he sneaks around and hides things from me. Like I didn’t know what he’s up to…. Sometimes I feel like just cutting him off. Maybe then he’d miss me.”
“You wouldn’t do that, would you?”
“I might…for a little while, just to get his attention. You know, it’s hard because when I looked forward to his birth, my greatest desire was to bless him, but sometimes he puts me in a position that I am forced to take things away from him, and that is just so not me. Would you hand me that Adam Taylor file, please? Another thing that bothers me: he keeps doing the same dumb things. I keep telling him over and over but he just won’t listen. He just keeps on doing things his way and then I have to watch him struggle and fall, time after time. Really, it breaks my heart, but what’s a father to do? I’m always trying to lead him in the way he should go, but, I tell you, sometimes that boy can really depart from it.”
“To say he misses the mark would be a gross understatement,” the secretary agreed. “Which cabinet is that file in?”
“It’s the one in S2505153.”
“Okay, here it is.”
“My pleasure, sir.”
“I’ll admit at times he disappoints me. There are times when I look at him and wonder if he’s even mine. Yet, there are other times when he does something that really encourages me, you know?”
“Yes, I know,” she said, then smiled sweetly. Folding her arms she stopped her work momentarily and asked, “So what is the toughest part about being a parent?”
“Well, I’d have to say that the first thing is the disobedience. It’s the first sign of trouble and it begins pretty early. Wanting their own way and thinking that they know better. It’s a slippery slope. Then, the ingratitude hurts so badly. Their desire for independence is so strong that they are willing to go to battle with their own parent, the one who has loved and nurtured them even as they were growing in their mothers’ wombs.”
“So, sir, what’s the cure?”
“Pretty simple, actually. I give them children just like themselves. You should hear them whine about their teenagers! I get a chuckle out of that one! The goal is that, one day, their eyes will be opened and they will look at their teenagers, their disobedience, their ingratitude, their desire to break off their relationship with their parent, and they will see that they are actually looking in the mirror. Only then can they fully understand me, their Heavenly Father.” Laying folder number S2505153 on the desk, he continued, “Adam Taylor, age 53, is only one of a multitude of unruly children I deal with on a daily basis, but, thanks to those children I sent him, he’ll be desperately looking heavenward any moment now!”
“Sir, your plan amazes me!”
“Well, if you think that’s something, you ought to see what I have in mind for the finale!”
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