Tuesday, March 1, 2011
"Even though he knew what would happen, what heartbreak and suffering and devastation would follow upon our disobedience, God chose to have children. And unlike some hyper-controlling parents, who take away every element of choice they can from their children, God gave us a remarkable choice. He did not make Adam and Eve obey him. He took a risk. A staggering risk, with staggering consequences. He let others into his story, and he lets their choices shape it profoundly. “ – John Eldredge
A recent interview with Billy Ray Cyrus focused on his view of his daughter’s infamous life and the effects of her choices on their relationship. Not with blame, but with lament, pain, and regret.
He remembers the day she was baptized. He remembers her entering fame full of faith. He remembers the days when they resolved to be lights in a dark, dark world. Like a child’s “see-saw” – every inch the she rose, their relationship fell. He watched the storm slowly and surely roll in. He advised, but never forced, her, choices regarding her life and their relationship. Though he has chosen to step back and separate from her actions, he remains active in his love.
He continues to send her messages that read “Here if you need me” and “I love you still”..but they haven’t spoken since the latest scandal. He says that she’ll be home for Christmas, so maybe they’ll talk then. Meanwhile, he watches with the rest of the world, but not as the rest of the world. This time, he watches as her father, much more than her friend (admitting that he should have acted this way years ago).
Those that try to steer her life, literally called “handlers,” have told him that it’s “none of his business.” How much he filled with hurt, and all the more longing, to be a part of her life. Not as her manager, not as her friend, but as her Dad – the one and only heart connection between a father and child. “I would take back everything that tore us apart; I would take it back in a second, just to have us together as a family again.” His daughter followed up with an angry retort that her father has been cut off from her life. Anger. Hurt. Destroy.
Mr. Cyrus is admittedly flawed, especially in his own mistakes regarding the relationship. As God has used flawed fathers over time to illustrate His love as my Perfect Father, I saw a tiny smidge of His view over me.
I believe that I am who people say that I am, good or bad, and live my life accordingly. The more I rise, even in my own mind and in my own fame, the more I slowly and subtly ignore the advice of my Father’s words. I come into the day ready to be a light to the dark, and in some cases, I may be. But if I am not listening to Him, conversing with Him, living in love with Him…I begin to believe that the light is me (inflamed by my own fame) and not Him. I believe a lie, become a lie and live a lie. I snub and snuff out the true Light.
Inevitably, I’ll receive His messages, but not respond with messages of my own. I’ll be in my home, and He’ll be in His, not to meet except maybe on holidays for a week or two. Meanwhile...He really does hurt watching my life unfold without Him. I am too busy to notice or, quite honestly, to care. I know that He is there watching over me. What I don’t know is how much He only wants to be with me. It’s a focus shift – from what I think of Him to seeing how much He thinks of me. From a temporal to an eternal, this view changes everything when I see me through His heart.
He has taken back everything that has kept us apart. He took back my past, my present, and my future at the highest and hardest cost – more than I can imagine and certainly more than I dwell on. He waits on me to come running Home…just to sit across the table and talk. Not like it was, but like it is.
Nothing brings a father more joy than his child’s presence. Not to be good, but just to be with him.
Written by Michelle Pack