the life we can’t predict

As he sat quietly in a corner, reading a book, my mum shook her head in disbelief : “We’d never have predicted he’d be like this, would we?”

She was right, of course.

We could never have predicted.

That wild one, two, three, four, five, six, and even sometimes, seven-year old was a very different child to this eight-year old sat in the corner reading a book. He’s still an energetic, untamed, Bear-Grylls-kind-of-boy, but he’s also now a Jesus-loving, book-loving, considerate, and compassionate boy too.

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We could never have predicted.

When there were temper-tantrums, spitting, door-slamming, biting, hitting, shouting, I could never have predicted. I could never have predicted this boy sat before me now.

Oh, there are still challenges. Many. He’s a kid (just like our other kids).

But we could never have predicted.

Our kids aren’t meant to be put in boxes. A seemingly shy child can develop into a fully fledged extrovert. And likewise a wild, rambunctious boy can become a book-loving introvert.

And they could change again.

Our job isn’t to box our kids and then to keep them in that box.

Our job is to disciple our kids in how to follow Jesus – helping them to hear and receive the love and words of Jesus for themseves and to live that out in their own lives. And as we love, nurture and disciple them we call out of them the treasure that’s been placed within.  Like all of us, our kids are rough diamonds which, as they connect more and more with Jesus, are formed into greater and greater beauty. They need the steady hand and encouragement of a few who will continue to lead them towards Jesus and believe “beyond the predictions”.

Photo Credit: PH Weddings

My vicar from my teenage years would shake his head in disbelief if he could see my life now.

He could never have predicted.

But I’m here telling this story, as a follower, friend, disciple and lover of Jesus, because a few people chose to believe that I was a rough diamond rather than a lost cause. A handful of people chose to believe that the God of all redemption could bring about His redemptive work even in someone like me. And He did, and He still is.

And so I’m a great believer in rough diamonds. I’m a great believer in the seemingly “lost cause”, the ones “without hope”. I’m a great believer, because I’ve been one of those rough diamonds, and still am. And more importantly, because I’m a great believer in a God who redeems.

I’m a believer in a God who doesn’t just clean us up a bit. I’m a believer in a God who washes away the old and brings in the new. I’m a believer in a God who chips off the rough edges and refines each and every day – for His glory.  I’m a believer in potential, because my God is a believer in potential.

I’m a believer in a God whom I now call friend.

I could never have predicted…..

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