I am reading Decisions Points by President George W. Bush and have found it hard to put down. Early in the book I ran into a quote that made me stop and reflect. He writes something that I haven’t heard anyone else refer to. It is found in the last sentence…
As I got older, I came to see my parent’s love was unconditional. I know because I tested it. I had two car wrecks when I was fourteen, the legal driving age back then. My parents still loved me. I borrowed Dad’s car, carelessly charged in reverse, and tore the door off. I poured vodka in the fishbowl and killed my little sister Doro’s goldfish. At times I was surly, demanding, and brash. Despite it all, my parents loved me.
Eventually their patient love affected me. When you know you have unconditional love, there is no point in rebellion and no need to fear failure. (Page eight)
I grew up with parents who affirmed their unconditional love for me. My wife and I have tried to instill this same knowledge in our children. We constantly reminded Amy, Trey, and Britton of our love by saying and showing the same. Many times Pam and I have said…
(Amy… Trey… Britton) Do you know why we love you? It is because you are our daughter/son. That alone means our love for you will NEVER change. No matter what you do or say, you cannot change the fact that we love you. If you make A honor roll or fail… we love you. If you do or don’t do well in dance or sports… we love you. If you honor us as your parents or one day stray from us… we love you. Nothing, and we mean nothing, can or will ever change that! Don’t ever forget that… okay?
To this day you can ask any of our children why Pam and I love them and they’ll tell you…. “Because I’m their child.”
But there was more to telling our children that than just the human affirmation. Pam and I wanted to model as best we could the kind of love God has for His children. We wanted them to be secure in their relationship to God through Jesus Christ. We wanted them to be able to know of God’s unconditional love for them, no matter how they might fail in the future. That is much more important than our children knowing their parents love them.
In President Bush’s one line he added great insight! “When you know you have unconditional love there is no point in rebellion and no need to fear failure.” If that’s true in the human experience, how much more is it true for Christians and their God?