When a king’s face
is like a
Today is our son’s birthday. It’s also a commemoration of the day I first became a mother and my husband, a father. New life appeared in three persons that January 26 thirty-eight years ago.
That’s our son in the accompanying photo; now a father himself to the two little people holding his hands. In their young lives, his is the ‘king’s face’ that when it brightens ‘means life’.
Whether we realize it or not, there is a domino effect when a ‘king’s face brightens’ in the vicinity of those who love him or who are under his care. Let me illustrate by relating a story our son shared with us some months ago.
It was time for the ‘ride of passage’ for our two grandchildren, now 6 and 5: the training wheels were coming off and dad was on duty to teach them how to ride their bikes.
Assuming their wobbly positions in the middle of the neighborhood street, small but mighty legs started pedaling while dad did what two-wheeler dads do – he ran in back of them while steadying the bike from behind. Though they couldn’t see him, they felt secure because of his strong hand balancing them and the bicycle.
They were free to pump those legs and get their rhythm going. Their first semi-taste of freedom!
This is when the story gets fun. While they’re pedaling for a bit, let’s step out and re-enter the tale of the king’s face.
We were standing in our son and daughter-in-law’s kitchen as he re-told the story we had first heard on the phone. You know those anecdotes we love to re-tell time and again that get better with firsthand visual animation? This was one of those.
I watched as our son’s face lit up – the equivalent of when ‘a king’s face brightens’. The sheer pleasure of the dad-child-learn-to-ride-a-bike-without-the-training-wheels experience was a life-giving moment, now relived again as he shared the details with us, this time in person. We life-brightened in return!
“He (their son) was doing great, so I was running along holding on to Sis. She had it down, so I came out from behind and started running beside her.
She looked over at me running next to her. “Whu-u-t-t?” Her eyes got BIG. I grinned at her and she grinned at me. Then she just took off … and been riding ever since!”
The ‘king’s face brightening’ gave life to her brother, and especially to her in that king’s face moment, as dad celebrated both of them – when they finally brought those bike tires to a triumphant skid!
Recently, mom started her own life-giving part-time vocation utilizing her new degree and our son is spending some more 1:2 hours with their two children as they juggle schedules and make it work.
More hours equals more opportunity to share the king’s face favor – like a rain cloud that gently but thoroughly moistens the soil that coaxes forth new life in the Spring.
Proverbs’ kind of face favor causes life to sprout and grow.
Fathers are important weathermen in the lives of their children. Wise ones learn the difference between thunderclouds that obscure the sun and the gentle Spring rain clouds that infuse favor (delight and acceptance) into the growing fields of their children’s young lives.
Not everyone grew up with a father who knew how or wanted to practice growing a life with face favor.
Some are fathers now who don’t know how, but they can learn. One’s never done being a father.
Some may not desire to or think they can ever do so. Though they may feel hopeless, there yet is hope.
As long as there are earthly fathers, there is one Father who epitomizes face favor in its fullest expression. His name is Abba.
If He’s your Daddy, face favor is one of His best benefits. When the King’s face brightens, it means Life.
Happy Birthday, Cameron! When your face brightens, you warm hearts and grow the lives of those around you.
May you run with the King in new ways this next year with big grins on both your faces 🙂