Last night, about 9, I decided to take a walk. My oldest son, Drew, almost 20, after working an 8 hour shift at Chick-fil-A on his feet chose to go with me. I felt guilty about it but he wasn't going to let me walk in the dark alone. Being that he is leaving for the Air Force in the next several months, I relish each moment with him so I didn't try to talk him out of it. Plus, as a man, he should have that reaction as a natural part of his being, I was glad it was an instant reaction on his part.
Drew and I have a special relationship. He is me with testosterone. Sometimes I feel horrible about that, he's got all that I hate about me. It's gonna be a long road to work through. But we also have conversations that could last hours and we both get tremendous joy from them. Last night it was all about his desire to know for sure that he had a place in heaven. What it really boiled down to was his understanding that he never did enough to please God. It wasn't really a works thing so much as it was a relationship thing. He knew his quiet time left a lot to be desired. He knew that throwing a prayer or two up before bed wasn't sufficient. He knew he wasn't always mindful of the presence of the Holy Spirit. Knowing all of that, was he worthy?
I had to admit it brought a smile to my face. I was delighted in my heart realizing that he had questions about his end of his relationship with Christ. I realized that those questions would only lead to increased holiness as he plowed through his daily time with God and worked at carving out more time to build the most important relationship he will ever have and the one that will sustain all others. I found myself pulling from memory a conversational technique one of our former pastors impressed me with; questions. So, I asked him questions. I asked him questions to help him clarify his faith for himself instead of relying on my words to reassure him.
In the end, the flaws of procrastination and a type-B personality reared their ugly heads. Just as I had been wrestling with those same issues in my life of daily housewife rituals, he allowed those negative traits to impact his relationship with Christ. Add to that the grace-heavy American perspective on sanctification and he had been cooking up complacency. Just as I had decided to fight what was keeping me from achieving a better and more effective day, he was going to have to choose to fight that which was keeping him from having a better and more abundant life in Christ.
For Drew (and maybe for all of us), holiness is the key. The deep-down need to grow the sprout of holiness that is pushing through the flaws, moving it aside to stretch out and grow closer to the Son. Water and sunlight and fertilizer aren't the answer here. It's study and prayer and deeper relationships with other believers. Throw in a mature Godly mentor and he's got the makings of a spiritual walk like he's never imagined.
It was a conversation given to us by the Holy Spirit. It was one I was chewing on for awhile. I have no fears for his safety once he leaves here and gives his all to fight for the freedom and liberty bestowed on us by our Creator. What I do ponder often are the decisions he makes when he has no one but himself and God to answer to. I pray this conversation helped him to consider his decision-making process before he leaves to make his way on his own. Maybe when decision time comes, it will be easy to know which fork in the road to take because he'd already studied the map.