So, Ben surprised me with this little gift. Super cute. I wonder what compelled him to think of me when wanting to give this to me! If he is hoping that he wants more brothers and sisters to climb on me and yank on my ears, forget it, it isn’t happening! Or is it that he sees me as a big dog looking over and protecting my pups (Norah and Ben)? Or does he see me to be like a mothering dog? Or does he see me as the big dog unfazed with the chaos of child raising that is overwhelming me? Or does he see me as a dad willing to get on the floor with the kids and play with them? Or maybe he got this to encourage me? Or maybe he's telling me that the kids are walking all over me?
I think I am overthinking it way too much! Most likely, he just got it for me because he thought it was cute and knew that I’d have this figurine on my work desk. To be honest, doesn’t really matter what he thinks about me. That sounded careless! But really? It doesn’t matter what Norah or Ben think about me. Because I know I am their dad. And I would do anything for them. Sacrifice it all in order to give them a better life, a strong self-esteem, and to be an example of what a good father should be. I will always be their father and they will always be my children.
As a matter of fact, doesn’t matter what they think of me or really anyone else! I think to often we can overthink way too much what other people think about ourselves. We wonder what their “intention” was or might be suspicious of people around us. We wonder too much whether we are liked by others or disliked by others. But in the end, it doesn’t matter what other people really think about you. No matter what all people need to know only one thing.
God loves you. God is cheering for you to make the better choice when life becomes a burden and struggle. And even if you fail to make a better choice, well God is there to pick you back up. God is your Father, and you are His children. No matter what.
If you find yourself struggling to build relationship with people. If you think you are unpopular with your peers. If you find yourself being judged more than being rejoiced, then I know that’s got to feel difficult. But no matter what. Whether you view yourself as a sinner or saint, hated or loved, gifted or taken, God is by your side, telling you that you are His child that he will love no matter what. After all what parents wouldn’t sacrifice their all for their children? Even if it came down to your life or theirs. Children come first. God sacrificed His life for yours. God granted you to be forgiven and you can live a life that is forgiven and give that gift to others. This week I encourage you all to be encouraged and to encourage others.
My kids just reminded me how much fun it is to run around at evening and catch lightning bugs! I love this time of the year because of these once in a year fireflies (lightning bugs) that come out and grace us with their presence and gifting us with their majestic glow.
First of all, in Pennsylvania do you call them lightning bugs or fireflies? I have always called them lightning bugs, so that is what I will be calling them in this article. But I think this is really cool to have this happen every year around this time. Also, I am very thankful that lightning bugs helped get Ben off his fear of flies, which man… was an issue prior to the arrival of lightning bugs. Now he doesn’t ever get nervous or cry when he sees an insect!
I bought the kids a little lightning bug catching kit and every evening we would run around and catch these creatures, put them temporarily in the viewing box and then let them go. It’s funny because as the sun is starting to go down, the kids would run out to the backyard window and just stare out there until they see the first lightning bug and then they’d tell me “It’s time to catch lightning bugs!” they get so excited with the anticipation and then the actual event of running around to get these bugs.
It reminds me of how we should act when it comes to the anticipation of God’s work in answering our prayers. We should be anxious with the anticipation of waiting for God’s revelation. Sometimes when we pray, we pray and then forget, or just feel nothing afterward. But we should be like kids waiting for lightning bugs. Holding our faces against the glass of the window and looking out just waiting to see a speck of light.
Sometimes that excitement of waiting for God’s revelation is the motivation we need to live each day and the next day with our best foot forward. God wants to see us excited, full of energy, and filled with joy. So, pray and anticipate, get excited because God will answer you soon! Just keep a look out and see the signs that He has given you.
So Eunkyung is not familiar with American/European nursery rhymes and songs. She is mostly learning them from our children. But it’s kind of like you hear a song on the radio, and you like it enough to sing it out loud, but also are not too familiar with lyrics, so you either make it up, or assume that you know the lyrics. That is like Eunkyung and the song Baa Baa Black sheep.
Yesterday, out of nowhere, she asked me who is Dave? So, I asked her I have no idea what she is referring too and, I need some context to her question. She started to sing, “Baa Baa Black Sheep have you any wool? Yes sir, yes sir, three bags full. One for the master, one for the Dave, one for the little boy who lives down the lane.” Wait, what? Dave? So, then she asked,” Why Dave? And who is this, Dave?” So, I corrected her and said, that it doesn’t say “Dave.” It’s actually, “dame.” And proceeded to explain what “a dame” means. Regardless, we concluded we like “the Dave” better. So, in our household, Dave, whoever you are, “Baa Baa Black Sheep” is for you!
But my point in writing this, is how much we may assume what either people are saying or thinking, without asking any questions. That could get us in real, unnecessary trouble. Also, how often we assume what is said in the Bible, that is not really true at all! For example, I was asked by someone where does, “Eat, drink, and be merry for tomorrow we die” is found in the Bible. I told them, that it’s not in the Bible. They looked at me like I was an alien. They explained to me that they have always been told that it is in the Bible and that they were pretty sure that they saw it in the Bible when they were younger. But I told them that it’s not in the Bible, but it is in the Mormon Bible (I think).
Often, we assume certain things about situations in life, faith, and what we think might be in the Bible. Another often quote we hear that we assume comes from the Bible, or at least has its origin in the Bible, is quoted, “This too shall pass.” Not in the Bible at all, as a matter of fact this quote isn’t even Christian at all! It comes from a Muslim poem, I believe. Or another quote, “money is the root of all evil.” Well, it’s sort of in the Bible, but we are missing a very important word. In the Bible, it is “the love for money is the root of all evil.” That is saying, money isn’t evil, but if our obsession and love for it becomes a replacement for joy, God, and family, well that’s not good at all! Or for example, in the story of Adam and Eve, we often mistaken that Adam and Eve took a bite from an apple. But there is no apple mentioned in the Bible. It’s just some unspecified fruit. But we want to assume apple because that is more common and relatable to us.
So, next time you assume something that may be in the Bible, think about, research it, study it! You may be misquoting. Also never assume what your friends, family, and peers are saying or thinking. Listen carefully and if you are confused ask questions to help give you any clarifications. As for now, I will re-teach my children, “Baa Baa Black Sheep” and declare, that Dave be part of the song!
Hey this is Rev. Brian Choi's random thought throughout my week. Most of this stuff, will probably be about family, church, fishing, music, movies, food, whatever I think of, hopefully it will have some sort of theological reflection (maybe).