It’s been a busy and hectic and amazingly awesome few weeks. My son got married.
I got to realize the dream of every father. To be able to look at my son and feel extremely and hugely proud of the man he’s become.
He’s doing well at university, has been elected head of his university’s broadcast arm, and has a good job offer for after he graduates next spring.
But that’s all just surface (though still very wonderful!)
He persuaded a terrific Christian woman to marry him. Knowing and seeing the love that he has for her makes me proud. That may seem like a strange thing to be proud of, but I am very proud of that in him. His love for her is not a selfish love. It’s a love for who she is and for her love of God. It’s a love that prefers her over himself. It’s the love that Paul talks about when he says that Christ loves us as a husband loves his wife.
Now we’re getting below the surface.
Almost any dolt can find someone to marry them. My new daughter isn’t just someone. That she choose to marry my son (and that her parents agreed) says a lot about him. And it’s the qualities that she sees in him and that I’ve seen develop in him throughout his life that has me bursting.
His Leadership – This is something that extremely few posses, that I don’t think is important for everyone to develop, and that I didn’t necessarily expect in him nor would have been disappointed had he not developed these. Leadership is a rather strange beast. There is often a fine line between leading and serving. A good leader does both and knows when each is needed. He’s learning these (and will continue to throughout his life) along with when direction is critical and when to leave people to do their own thing and contribute in their way. He’s learning what goofs are important to deal with and which to let slide. He’s learning what attributes are most important in people you hire (like character and integrity!).
His Family Leadership – OK, I sort of lied when I said that leadership isn’t important for everyone. Leadership in the home is important for all husbands and fathers. And wives and mothers. Like public leadership, it’s a balancing act of leading and serving, of knowing what’s important to deal with and what’s not. It’s accepting our own failures as the imperfect people we are and knowing what to realistically expect of others. And most important, looking to God to guide us as we guide our families. Seeing him develop in to the husband that God wants him to be is truly joyful.
His Character – A big huge bundle of really important stuff! He has a strong work ethic. He’s compassionate and caring. He has a good sense of humor (and is learning to laugh at his own humanness – like referring to his new wife as his husband in a toast at his reception). He’s developing a good sense of when to be serious and when it’s not so important. He’s learning more and more to appreciate and respect the good in others, to not judge others, but also to choose his friends and close associates carefully. He’s always been fairly even keeled, but he’s gaining a better realization that on the other side of every valley is a hill or mountain (and that hills and mountains don’t last forever) and that eventually there is light at the end of every tunnel and that over time things work out and that a positive attitude goes a long way towards overall happiness.
His Integrity – Truthfulness and honesty and accuracy are important to him. As they should be to all of us. ‘nuff said.
His Faith – Above all else, he is continually deepening his relationship with Christ. Just like all of us he still occasionally has his struggles and doubts, but he’s learning to take these in stride.
So I get to bask for a bit in being a very proud papa. For the man my son has become and for my new daughter – the woman he chose and who agreed to marry him.