Seeing Jesus every day 

If yesterday was “Friend Day”…what’s today?If you’ve ever been a parent, then you know that one of the most difficult scenarios you can find yourself in occurs when one of the kids wakes up abruptly and empties their stomach all over themselves.  

For a moment, you’re paralyzed, and then instinct takes over and you grab the child along with everything that got splattered and you throw them all in the bath tub. Well…that’s what my instinct told me anyway. This happened Saturday night. Wife was out of town and Dad was in charge. There’s no manual. There’s no step-by-step that comes to mind. I’ve got a six year old who is wailing, who’s scared, and who needs someone to take care of her.  

Soon, what was a frightening scurry of events, becomes a tender moment of vulnerability and love. It was a long night, with several other hurried moments that evolved into gentle whispers of affection.

That night, I was reminded that as a parent, the most important part of my job is to be present…really present. It’s not just a “I’m physically here” thing, but a fully engaged presence that is cognizant of the power of being and the gift of now.

Saturday night’s events meant that I couldn’t attend Central’s annual Friend Day. I love this day. I love the food and the fellowship. I love the crowd and the camaraderie. I love that we worship together as we’re accustomed to on Sunday mornings, and then we continue our worship by the way we share our lives together over a meal. It is the intentionality of each person to be PRESENT, whether by serving ribs or in shaking hands. We show we are “FRIENDS” because we show we are really THERE.

But today is Monday. If yesterday was “Friend Day”, what is different about today? Is our worship completed? Is our fellowship broken?

If my Saturday and your Sunday have taught us anything, it should be that we are needed in the present. Our lives should be shared together both in fragile vulnerability and in celebratory feasts. Each morning, we awaken to new opportunities to share life together, and this is a tremendous gift.

In a book I’m reading, the author says,

“Jesus taught his disciples a prayer that begins, ‘Our father, who’s in heaven…’

…which is another way of saying,

Begin your prayers—begin your day—by acknowledging that your life is a gift and this gift flows from a source. This source is responsible for the air in your lungs, the blood that courses through your veins, and the vitality that surges through you and everything around you.

…which is another way of saying,

Begin whatever you’re doing by remembering that you are here and you have been given a gift.”

Today is a gift. May we show our gratitude by how we accept the present.

Chad Tappe

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