‘Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ.”
1 Corinthians 11:1 (NAS)
As I was driving from Tallahassee with two of my sons in the pouring rain, I glanced over at them often and watched as they slept so peacefully.
It was storming horrifically and I did not want to trust them with driving so I prayed continuously and fought my way through this eight hour ordeal.
Tropical storm Debbie was wreaking havoc all through the panhandle of Florida.
The more I watched them, recordings of them growing up replayed on the movie screens in my mind.
I recalled very vividly of exceptional moments that would forever be embedded in my heart. Fighting back tears I drove through the storm, enjoying the soaking that my heart was receiving from those precious memories.
I thought how we would never be able to go back and redo anything that has already passed through these episodes of our lives.
I wondered if I had been a good example for them, even in those times when they did not see the best in me.
Every now and then when I would hit a bump in the road or pass through puddles of water and the car would swerve, my sons would awaken and ask, “Daddy you alright, you got it”. My constant answer was “I’m alright”.
I can remember similar times and moments like this with my daddy during of life and how his response would be, “Its gon be alright, God’s got it and I’m okay”.
Seeing the strength of my daddy, his perseverance and his unmovable faith, I use to tell him that if I could be half the man he was I would be alright too.
Yep, I told my daddy that I’m going to be just like you.
A few hours later a song came over the radio that made this entire scenario so surreal and sensitive. The song is title, ‘Cats In The Cradle’, by Harry Chapin.
This soul steering song was concerning a father who never could schedule time from his profession to be with his son.
Throughout each stage of his son’s growing life and different activities, there was something that pulled the father away.
Each time the son asked the father to join him in activities that were father and son related, the father perpetually had some job connected thing to do and yet the son’s love for his father allowed the son’s reply to be, “Someday I’m going to be just like you dad”.
This song is a reminder not to put one’s occupation before family.
The song begins with a verse about a father with his newborn son. Even though the father gets the initial part right, he does not spend worthwhile time with his son because of his livelihood.
In the beginning, this gives the impressions its ok because bills have to be paid and a living has to be made.
The father has no idea what he is exposing the son’s reality to and over time, father and son grow into exchanging roles.
Now the father understands his son’s aspirations and objectives to get ahead in life and he wants to spend quality time with him. Reality catches up with the father and he now grasps that his son has no time for these things.
The last verse exemplifies that the “son” is grown with a stressing job and a family of his own.
In an obtrusive change of roles, the son now has no time to spend with his father. Despondently, the father recognizes that his boy has become just like him.
Be mindful of what others see in you that they want to emulate. It’s not always a positive thing when someone tells you that they want to be like you when what you are showing them is not what you want.
“More and more each day, like Christ we need to be in every kinda of way.” By Bobby R. Henry, Sr.