Happy Father‘s Day!! Today we thought we’d bring you something from a good friend. Allow me to introduce you to Joel Waldman. When you imagine a strong, kind, loving man of God, that’s exactly what Joel is! We’ve only known each other for a couple of years, but our friendship has grown fast. Joel and his wife, Angie, recently welcomed their second little baby boy to the family. They are a young, growing family who loves being outdoors and spending time together. Here’s today’s post from Joel:
This trip was going to be amazing. My wife and I had decided to take our 1.5-year-old son, Max, on a visit to the Pacific Northwest before he officially assumed the responsibilities of big brother in a few short months. I had also recently started a consulting business and was putting in long hours to get it going, some time away was just what our little family needed. We had a few days planned in Seattle before heading up to Vancouver and I was bound to make the most of it.
We set off on our first adventure that afternoon, a scenic tour of the Seattle skyline from the Puget Sound aboard a beautiful 3-story ship, offering exceptional views of the bay. At least, I heard the views were exceptional. While the collective ‘Oohs’ and ‘Ahhs’ could be heard from the rest of the passengers out on the deck, Max and I spent the majority of the boat ride inside. Why, you might ask? Well, Max had just mastered the art of climbing stairs a few weeks before and you better believe anytime he laid eyes on a set of steps he was bound to show them who was boss. Forget about the spectacular views to be had just a few short feet away, all that mattered to Max was that he was climbing, one step at a time.
I’ll admit, I was more than a little disappointed when the boat pulled into the harbor to dock. I had visions of Max being enthralled with the ocean air blowing on his face and pointing to countless buildings and sea creatures while I used each one as a teachable moment to impart some nugget of unearthed wisdom that would later transform his life. But all he could focus on that day was climbing the stairs, step by step. Sadly, my unrealistic expectations and desires to be a fun dad got in the way of having a good time.
Later on, replaying the day’s events in my head and feeling dejected after how the afternoon’s adventure had gone, I felt God laying the story of David on my heart. It’s one of the many times God has used fatherhood to teach me a lesson about my own faith. With uncertainty with the future direction of my business and anxiety about welcoming another child into the world, I felt inadequate to lead my family when I was as restless as they were about what the future held.
God reminded me of David in the book of Psalm. Just like Max on the stairs, focused on the next step. Only the next step.
David’s future was uncertain.
He didn’t know where to go.
He felt alone.
Any father’s out there feeling the same way, especially right now?
In the wake of high unemployment, social unrest, and economic instability, it’s unusual if you DON’T have some feelings of fear for the future. Especially for fathers, navigating how to lead your family in such turbulent times can be overwhelming. Paralyzing. Thankfully, God doesn’t want us to look too far ahead.
In the midst of the most challenging season of his life, David writes in Psalm 37:23,
“The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him.”
David’s future is unknown to him, but God makes sure his next steps are firm.
The same is true for us.
There’s a crazy thing that happens to feelings of fear and anxiety when you ask God to simply lead you today. Fear is replaced by faith, anxiety with adoration.
It’s easy to get distracted by the future when all God’s calling us to is the next step.
Fathers, be encouraged today knowing that in the midst of uncertainty, God is simply calling you to love your family well and to trust Him with each step.
Amen! Thank you for that Joel! What a great reminder! It’s so easy to get caught up in the stress and pressure of everything going on around us, especially right now. God is guiding, leading, and protecting us. Just take one step at a time and enjoy the journey.