Parenthood has so far been a fascinating journey for us. I don’t know how I expected to feel, but it has taken awhile for me to feel like a ‘Dad’. Little Welford has called us Mummy and Daddy right from the off, which was nice, but it also felt like they were just names he knew us by rather than roles we had in his life. I’m probably wrong but I always imagined that being there for the birth of my own child would be a significant moment, and I would gladly accepted that mantle of Dad with bended knee and to rousing applause. In reality I probably would have fainted.
Something changed this last week though. I don’t know if I sense Little Welford putting more feeling into the words Mum and Dad, or if we are simply experiencing a new level of intimacy with our little dude. What I do know is that at one point last week my mind accepted that I was a Dad. The interesting thing, of course, is that I have been a Dad right from the first moment Little Welford entered our lives, whether I felt like it or not. It didn’t matter if I felt like I cheated my way into fatherhood, in fact my fickle feelings matter very little at all. Feelings are a guide or a warning sign but they do not change the truth.
Sometimes I find it hard to believe certain things about God. My feelings tell me he shouldn’t love me, that it’s hard to love him, that he can’t forgive me. But yet again my feelings don’t change the truth. My love for God is proved out in the times it is hard to love him, in the times my feelings fade and yet I stay the course. Similarly the truth is God loves me whether I feel it or not. Let’s subject our feelings to the truth rather than the other way round.
John 8:31-32 ‘To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’