Tenth Birthday

IT WAS HIS TENTH BIRTHDAY

But this year was weird. Unlike previous years no one in the family had said anything about the approaching day. He was mystified. As the days passed and the big day approached, his feelings went from mystified to amazed to saddened to depression as he realized they must have forgotten his birthday.

How can you forget your oldest son’s birthday? he thought.

He was distraught.

The night before his birthday he laid awake in bed pondering the whole issue. He could hardly sleep.  Morning brought no relief as he got up, went to the kitchen and no one said anything other than good morning. He walked slowly to school. He couldn’t concentrate all day long. He dreaded the last bell. That meant he had to go home to the family that had forgotten him!

He took longer than normal going home. Half way there it hit him. It had to be a surprise party. There was no other explanation. He repented of all the mean things he had thought about his family. Now he was more nervous than ever. He picked up his pace. He approached the front door and entered prepared for people to jump out from their hidden places yelling surprise.

The surprise?

It didn’t happen. Nothing. Deeper depression. Oh, they must be in the kitchen. He lays down his backpack and says out loud (as if to warn them). “I guess I’ll go to the kitchen for some cookies and milk.” No one there.

Auuggghhh!

How could it be? He gave up.

He went back to the living room and just then he saw his dad coming down the steps from his bedroom with two packages in his arms.

“Hi son, welcome home. Come sit with me on the couch.”

They sat down. He is encouraged to see the wrapped gifts.

“Son, happy birthday. I’m sure you’ve been wondering what was happening.” The son sat silently, having no clue as to what was about to happen.

“Son you are the first of the kids in our family to turn 10. Ten is a very special year in our family and you are the first to pass for this.”

He hands his son the first package and asks him to open it. He did. Wooppeeee! A book. The title is “The Book of Life”.

The father explains, “Son, this is now the most important book in your life. You must start reading it and studying it today. We will have regular lessons on it. You must learn it quickly. It will tell you how to live. Now if you can learn and do what this book tells you to do, without failing, when you turn 65 you will be fully acknowledged and accepted as my son and you will receive your inheritance from me.”

The son is sitting in stunned silence trying to figure out exactly what his father is saying. It makes no sense.

Without giving his son time to develop a response the father hands him the second package. A big one. 

The son slowly opens it not knowing what to expect and finds a large folded piece of soft material.  He tries holding it up. He has to stand up in order to hold it up in the air, reaching up high above his head. It is some kind of robe or something. It is black with dark blue trim.

The father responds to his sons puzzled-looking face by saying, “You’ll grow into it son. It has to last you all your life. It is a ‘talking’ robe. From this time on any time you want to talk to me you need to put on this robe, go to the bottom of the stairs going up to your mom’s and my bedroom (oh by the way, from today on you CANNOT go upstairs anymore to be with us). call my name ‘Father on the Second Floor’ and if I can I will come to the top of the stairs and we can talk. Now, in the back of the book there is a CD that you need to listen to. It will teach you how to chant/talk with me in the future (My Father who is on the second floor, may I please speak to You?)  You need to practice it and when you start getting it right, the tone, inflection, variations, etc., I’ll listen. NOW if somewhere along the line you screw up at school, with work, with the police or something, don’t tell me. You go tell your uncle Fred. And Fred will tell me about it. Okay son, happy birthday. Do you understand it all? Any questions?”

Now, here is something for YOU to think about. 

What do you think this son would be thinking about his dad and this family he was born into at this point? I’ve heard many different responses to that question. The most common is something like “Weird!”

And I agree.

And here is the point. While we would consider such behavior as weird in a family relationship, we have been duped into thinking that it is “okay” when talking about a personal relationship with our heavenly Father. Some have been led to believe that it is normal in that realm! I propose it is also weird when talking about God, our Heavenly Father, and that it’s not what the God of the Bible wants or has asked for. Many men with their religious ideas or philosophies have messed it all up. And it is pathetic. It is all about relationship; that is, a loving relationship with our Heavenly Father.