Obadiah, it is unfathomable to me that you are turning 7 today.
That means that I have had the privilege of being your dad for 2556 days.
I’ve had 61,344 hours to watch you grow.
3,680,640 minutes to pray for you.
220,838,400 seconds to enjoy life with you.
And I count every one of those seconds as lost that I did not spend completely engaged with you. You see, I try to devote myself to you in so many ways. It is easy to get distracted in life (you admittedly know that temptation). But I must say this, I have never once regretted spending one of those minutes with you. In your 61,344 hours of life, I have never once regretted chasing one of your dreams with you.
Those numbers may seem like a lot, but you fill every one of them up with passionate joy, philosophical discussions, and creative endeavors.
I celebrate all of those seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, and years. Ever since they handed you to me in the hospital, my life changed. You made me a father. I’m not perfect, but oh, how I am striving to be the best father to you and your siblings. I want to father you the way God fathers us.
It startled me at 4:30 this morning when I saw you by my bedside. You had walked down the stairs to tell me of your bad dream, but I’ll be honest I thought the story in it was great. Granted, I was saddened that you were dreaming that a giant eagle grabbed you off of the church playground and began to take you away from your friends. But I did love the part of the dream where you said I rescued you from the eagle.
“Well, buddy, then I guess you are OK. You want to go back to bed then?”
“Yeah, it was just kind of hard to tell if it was a dream or real. But at least you rescued me. So I guess it wasn’t that bad of a dream after all.”
No, it wasn’t. I pray that whether the fears in your life are real or are in your dreams that you know you are never alone. I am here for you. Rest assured in that. Your father will protect you. Your father will point you to one who can protect you even more intently and ferociously than I will.
I have loved watching you get to know him better this year. Jesus is talking to you. He is drawing you. And you are drawing in. I can’t wait to see where all this goes in this next year.
Among the games and the Legos this morning, I loved watching you open up that song journal. As you read “Amazing Grace” on the cover, you stated, “That’s my favorite song.” The sigh you gave when you realized that you could write your own worship songs on those blank pages was a gift to me. I love watching you scribble your words in your attempts to show God how much you love him.
As I think of all the wonderful things you will write on those pages, I am thankful to God for all the things he is writing on the pages of your life. You are a treasure, and I love reading what God is writing in you.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them. -Psalm 139:16
You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. -2 Corinthians 3:2
Happy Birthday, Son. You are loved and treasured more than my pages could ever say.