Josh, my oldest son, turned 18 in March of this year. With that milestone came the realization that his journey away from home and towards his life adventure is close. The passage from a boy to young man was only the first leg of that voyage. As I was meditating about that mission I thought of the following scripture.
"Then Jesus said to them again, Peace to you. As My Father has sent Me, even
so I send you." John 20:21
The Greek word for sent here is Apostello; which means sent out. Also, the Greek word for send here is Pempo, which talks about going out in an orderly motion, and to thrust or insert one thing into another. Thrusting and insertingsounds painful doesn't it? As I "apostello" my son into the world, I marvel at the strength it takes. My fathering is pressed to take on new dimensions on how to protect, how to cover, and more importantly, how to release.
You see, more that I care to admit, I still try to decide and think for Josh. That's not sendingthat's keeping! In all of this I found out that release is a matter of trust. Not just the decisions of my son Joshua but trusting in the ones of Father God. All these 18 years I knew that Josh belonged to the Father, that I was a temporary steward of God's choosing. Yet, being at the edge of that thrust into his mission is more of a question of faith for me than my son. What fuels that faith? How about 18 years of groundwork and foundation laying.
Deu 6:5 "Love GOD, your God, with your whole heart: love him with all that's in you, love him with all you've got!"
Deu 6:6 " Write these commandments that I've given you today on your hearts. Get them inside of you."
Deu 6:7 "and then get them inside your children. Talk about them wherever you are, sitting at home or walking in the street; talk about them from the time you get up in the morning to when you fall into bed at night."
What you build into your children will last, that's the promise of these Scripture and the one in Proverbs 22. So when the moment of apostello releasing comes it's a generational one. There is a supernatural release of power, purpose and passion. Dreams are given permission to cut loose and develop into all the Father desires. This release empowers the dad as well, taking our fathering skills to another level. Part of our makeup, our fathering DNA is to release our children into their journey. Like our Father God, sending them out to fulfill purpose gives strength to walk out all God has for them.
Just because God waswell, God, I don't think it was any easier to apostello Jesus into the darkness of humanity. Driven by love, the Father thrusts His son into our world to deliver us from that darkness. That same fatherly love is imparted into our lives for sending our own children on a similar mission. This step of release is never easy for a parent but it is one step in a journey closer to having a heart like our Heavenly Father.
"Point your kids in the right direction-- when they're old they won't be lost"
"However painful the process of leaving home, for parents and for children, the really frightening thing for both would be the prospect of the child never leaving home."
Robert Neelly Bellah
Jay Cookingham is a freelance writer and a graphic designer. Published in three of the "God's Way" series, as well as, "Smiles for Dads", "Soul Matters and "A Man After God's Heart". Find out more at: http://www.jaycookingham.com