Today's devotion from Psalms 70 & 71.
My world has been rocked by a revelation as of late. I had a birthday, my 38th, and upon reflection I realized that when my father was my age, he had an 18 year old son. My parents were married young, and then began having a family when they were both 20 years old. I've never really realized how incredible this was until I began looking at people my parents' age as peers and realizing the coming drama of teenagers. (Our oldest daughter is 10 years old.)
I can say, with absolutely no hesitation, that I am in no way, shape, form, or fashion qualified to parent an adult at my age. I still struggle with my 6 year old! My parents did a great job. I can only hope that I'm half the dad that I have.
As I've wrestled with these concepts recently, I was ready for Psalm 71. The psalmist speaks of God's all-encompassing work in his life. He wrote, "Upon you I have leaned from before my birth; you are he who took me from my mother's womb." (Psalm 71:6, ESV) Initially, this may seem confusing. How could he have faith in God before he is even born or aware?
This isn't some confusing theology. Instead, it's merely an assent to the truth that all of us are completely dependent on God regardless of our acknowledgement. There is nothing any of us can really do at any time independent of Him. We lean on Him even when we don't know that we need Him. The psalm continues in confessing that the psalmist's desire is to continue to trust in God, "...even to old age and gray hairs." (Psalm 71:18, ESV) His prayer is that God would never, from birth to death, forsake him.
I am not mentally ready to parent teenagers, but I wasn't mentally ready to be a parent at all. I'm not ready to pastor a church. I'm not ready to live by faith. I'm not ready to undertake most of the parts of life that I am living right now. God is not only my hope in salvation, but in successfully doing what He has called me accomplish. I have to lean on Him to be the husband and father that I need to be for my family. I have to trust Him to help me be the pastor He desires even though I don't "feel" ready. I have to follow Him in faith every step of the way. He is my hope.