Sunday, April 09, 2006

Two-Wheeled Theology

Yesterday, I taught Darien how to ride his bike without training wheels. It was a big day for a 5 year old. (A pretty big day for Dad, too.) I started as I suppose most Dads before me do, by holding the back seat of the bike while he pedaled. I ran along beside him, giving instructions. "Pedal faster!" "Sit up straight!" "Keep going! You're doing great!"

"Daddy", he said, "Now my bike is just like yours." He paused. "Now I'm just like you!"

Sweet. But the reality is, nope. Not yet, he isn't. Darien had forgotten that I was still holding on to the seat of his bike. As soon as I let go, he remembered...and crashed within seconds.

After about 35 minutes of running and holding, crashing and scraping, he rode his bike for 3 straight blocks without falling. He did it! We hugged. We gave hi-fives. We took pictures.

"Great job!" I said.
"You always say that...", he grinned.

From the advice I gave him, I began to realize the theology my 5 year old was learning.

1. You're gonna fall down. It happens to all of us. Even in the best of families. It's part of our condition. And part of the process. Darien asked me when we got started, "Do you think I'll fall down?"
"Oh, yeah", I said, "Everyone falls at first. But you'll figure it out. You're gonna do great."
As a Christ-follower, I still fall. Just when I think I'm just like Dad, I bust it. Ah, well.

2. Slow down. When things get wobbly, use your brakes.

3. Look where you want to go. If you're afraid of running off the sidewalk, don't keep staring at the grass. That's where you'll end up. If you wanna stay on the sidewalk, keep your eyes there. My wife used to say,"Keep your eyes on Jesus and your feet will go right." I don't care to argue hermeneutics or exegesis. Why? For the most part, I'm still struggling with 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' I have a hard enough time keeping my eyes fixed on the prize.

A great day. I'm sure I'll spend the rest of the week going on bike rides. And putting on Band-Aids.


At 7:27 AM, Blogger Craig said...

Itis amazing how God will use our children to teach us about Him.

At 8:54 AM, Blogger tom cottar said...

No doubt. It seems to be that (for me) the simplest things are what God uses to be profound...and humbling.

I've been amazed at how humbling it is to be a parent! heh.


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