For the Want of a Mom and Dad [Part 1]
By Alan Wright — December 25, 2017
Merry Christmas! Are you ready for some good news?
In Christ, you’re no orphan. You’re an heir!
Today’s text: “But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children. ... For you know how, like a father with his children, we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you ….” (1 Thessalonians 2:7–12, ESV)
Years ago, Ernie and Ginnie Ruckert developed a unique ministry in the orphanages. They invited kids to write poetry. What those kids have written over the years would stir you, bless you, tickle you – and sometimes, haunt you.
I’ve always been haunted by a particular poem of a young orphan named Juan. Juan entitled his poem “The Want of a Mom and Dad”:
Moms and dads are wonderful
For those people
That has a mom and dad.
Parents that guide you and teach you the right way
Not the wrong way.
As for me I never knew my mom.
My dad drunk all the time.
I don’t know what it is like
To have a mom and dad --
A dad to wrestle and play with
A mom to tell me everything is okay
When something is wrong.
Parents that really care for me.
Ones that will help me
Not abuse me.
I wish I had a mom and dad.
Why can’t I have a mom and dad
Like all the other kids?
In his letter to the Thessalonians, in the span of a few verses, Paul mentions both the nurture of a mother and the exhortation of a father. He’s saying simply: we were like both a mother and a father to you spiritually. We need both. We need someone like a mother to nurture us, love us unconditionally and hold us close. But we also need someone like a father to challenge us, awaken destiny within us and strengthen us.
“A dad to wrestle with” and a “mom to tell me everything is okay.” God is both to His children. He is perfect love that welcomes us and casts out fear. And He is perfect truth that points us toward a high calling. No matter what family brokenness you’ve experienced on earth, you’re no orphan in Christ. You’re an heir. It’s the best Christmas gift ever given. And that’s the Gospel!