Yesterday I had the privilege of participating in a symbolic knighting of my nephew Noah and my son Zach. I am thankful that a number of years ago David Emig introduced me to the concept of “raising a modern day knight”. What is a knighting you ask? Basically, the whole idea is that as Christian men it is our responsibility to raise our sons with the same integrity, valor, etc. that knights of old were expected to have. I have done my best to raise my sons in this way and have had this ceremony for each of my sons after their 18th birthday (okay I am a little late on Zach who is almost 20). I don’t want to give away too many of the details as I have other nephews that will be going through this, but it is a special day we set aside and bring together key men (father, grandfathers, uncles, pastor, etc.) in the life of the son and each one shares one-on-one their heart about a specific biblical topic that they have demonstrated well in their own lives. We then come together for a ceremony where we acknowledge that the boy has become a man and the dad gives his blessings as well as a charge on the son. If you want to learn more about this, I would encourage you to visit www.rmdk.com and read up on it.
Is the ceremony important? In my opinion it is a very meaningful time that helps remind the son that he is now a man and responsible for his own actions, but there are many good ways of doing this without a ceremony. What is more important than anything is that the father (and mother) take the responsibility to teach their sons (and daughters) to have an intimate relationship with Jesus and what that should look like as it overflows in their life as they live in the world. I have not been a perfect parent by any means, but I do my best to teach these things to my children and look forward to being able to teach these same things to the children that God puts in my care in Honduras. We won't be perfect Christians nor perfect parents to the hurting children of Honduras either, but we want to make an eternal impact on the people of Honduras in the way God has called us by ministering to the "least of these".
As I reflect on the events in the news over the past week, I am reminded of how much hate and injustice is in the world because of sin. We all like to label it because then we can blame it on something that we are not personally guilty of, but the fact is sin is dark and sin causes people to be full of hatred for a lot of reasons and sometimes we don't even recognize it is there until it rears its ugly head. Unfortunately, even good people are not immune to sin and hatred at times, but a life committed to God that repents and accepts God’s forgiveness and learns to allow love (God is love) to rule. In this dark world we need more “modern day knights” that are willing to put others before themselves and stand up for what is right and love people regardless of the cost. We need to all get out of the church walls and be the church in a dark and dying world, whether your wold is across the street or on the other side of the world.