Soak It Up

It’s been a season of milestones. Many, many milestones.

That’s what we call them. The Romans developed the practice of placing milestones along their famous paved highways. They were a much more stylish and less forgiving version of our roadside mile markers found along our interstate highways.

Over time the term “milestone” has come to reference any of the significant times in our lives. Our birthdays are all milestones to some degree, but some of them stand out as more significant – 13, 16, 18, 21. (I don’t really need any comments regarding the omission of 40 from this list or about that particular milestone being a mere two weeks down the calendar of my life.)

My oldest son is graduating from high school next week. Where in the world did all of that time go?

Tori and I have tried very hard to pay attention and not miss the many milestones along the way. Of course, we have six kids. If we stop to really stare at each milestone along the way, we’ll never get anywhere. But as we see these days with all of our kids at home coming to an end, it’s hard not to feel like they are so much sand sliding freely through our fingers.

So many times along the pathway of parenting we have wished that we could lock it all down and keep them at that age. Right now, though it’s a rowdy and rough and argumentative place a lot of the time, they’re just so much fun. We laugh a lot.

But time rushes by and there is no way to put more time into a day or more days in the year. I want to slow it down – to ride the brakes a while and stretch the days just a little bit longer. But I can’t.

I was warned long, long ago. I was given a very clear plan. I was told to pay attention to how I navigate the days I have. I was advised to use well the time I am given. I was even cautioned that the dark days in which we live would make it much more difficult to do.

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.

Ephesians 5.15-16

Great advice. Solid counsel. Tall order.

And what it is tells me in the context of being a dad and the days flying by and the milestones that seem to be more like fence-posts . . . is just to soak it up.

A few years back I was struck by a song that so beautifully expressed this concept. I hope you’ll give it a listen and then join me in praying for more space in the sponge of my heart to really soak it up.

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