Today, my son begins his journey of manhood! Happy Birthday Caleb!

Today is Caleb’s 13th birthday!

13 years ago, I anticipated his arrival with great expectation and desire. As much as I loved our daughter Haleigh, I wanted a son to share my likes and hobbies, to lead and train into a man, and to be a companion one day as he would begin manhood and have a family. In the last 13 years, I have not been disappointed with Caleb for a minute. He is everything I desire to be in a man; calm, caring, gentle, strong willed, steady, loving, and intelligent. In many ways, Caleb is like me and in many other ways he is not. We share a common love for analytical challenges. When he was under a year old, people would think he was mad because he would carry this scowl about him, however it wasn’t his emotion showing but his mental process showing while he attempted to analyze the people interacting with him and the situations he was experiencing. I could see in his eyes then, and still see today, a man engaging the world before speaking, and loving people through acting not through words. This is where he is unlike me, Caleb doesn’t need words to express himself, where I use too many. If Caleb is around you, he is loving you. He helps when asked and has when he wasn’t. Caleb is a leader and has been from his childhood. He has stepped up when others wouldn’t. He has served, not in front, but from the side and the back without recognition. He has found pleasure in others finding hope and joy. He has sacrificed entitlement to enjoy his family. Caleb rarely complains and when he does, it usually exposes my sin and how careless I had been toward him. He is unique and an incredible blessing. 

When Michelle shared with me that she was pregnant again, less than 14 years ago, I begged God for a son. What God has given me was more than I had asked for and continues to be God’s Grace toward me. Caleb is a forgiving man. When I have failed and have had to humble myself, he rarely brings my sin back up - unless it is to remind me of the time I cheated on a board game. This is another area we are the same, we both want to win and have a hard time when all other players are against us. Recently, he was being targeted by his siblings in a family game and I watched his pain as he played. Finally, justice rose and he corrected his siblings. During that game I had to remind him that people shoot at the best player in the game. They will find ways to get that player off the board because that person is the biggest threat to their winning. 

Caleb is a huge threat to the kingdom of darkness. He is teachable which positions him to be led to grow. He doesn’t need the spotlight nor seeks it, allowing his subtle humility to shine and the light of Jesus to be seen through him. He is more concerned for the souls of others than his personal comfort. He sacrifices without a fight and does it with joy. This is my son, the one whom God has given me to lead and guide into adulthood. Today, he has begun that journey. I believe, as at the jews did years ago, that there are children and there are adults. Adolescent wasn’t seen until the 1930’s and is still being created today through social sciences. However, the bible speaks of children and adults. Yes, he is a young man but today he is a man. He is responsible for his faith and responsible for his relationship with God. He is responsible to care for others and treat the opposite sex with honor and grace. He is responsible to repent when he sins and keep himself teachable. He is responsible to serve and use his gifting for the good of others and the building of God’s kingdom. Today, he is responsible to live as a man and put away childish things. Today, Caleb is fulfilling what he has been practicing as a child, his manhood. 

I know my son is only 13 today, but he is a man and has already taught me how to be a better father and man. I look forward to the day he finds a wife to serve and lead. I look forward to the day he finds his unique journey that God has him on. I look forward to the day when he holds his firstborn and prays for God’s help to lead that child well. Today I celebrate his passing from childhood to manhood and I look forward to how his manhood transforms this world as Christ Jesus walks Caleb through life. I love my son and I thank God for Him. Today, he is a man!


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