Before Gavin arrived and while Mary was still working, Joey, Sophie and I had daddy days on Saturdays if Mary were working. Usually those days started by me taking them to Bojangle’s (a breakfast, biscuit place) to have breakfast and at some point during the rest of the day we’d play superheroes.
Joey always loved to be Batman and Sophie typically took Captain America (those were the dress up costumes they have). I’d usually be the Hulk because I was bigger than them and I had a green t-shirt. We’d romp around the house, inside and out, playing for an hour or two or at least until they got bored. The last two times that we played Joey insisted that I change characters to Superman. When I asked him why he’d say, “Because you’re my hero. And you’re super.” Kleenex, folks. I needed Kleenex to wipe away the tears, to which Joey replied, “Daddy, Superman doesn’t cry!” He was right or at least that’s our impression of him.
Most parents might have taken the sudden change of character as nothing at all, but when my son looked at me and called me a hero and said that I was super, that stuck with me. In his little eyes I was a hero. Somewhere along the line I did something that stuck with him and in his eyes that made me a hero. Your probably thinking, “He doesn’t really know what a hero is” or “His concept of a hero is skewed because there’s so much he doesn’t know” and you may be right, but for the time being I’m going by what he said and here’s why. It wasn’t long after this he started saying things like “Daddy, you can do that” or “Daddy could do that easily.” My point is my son believes in me. He believes that I’m some sort of great being that can do incredible things. He watches me pick up things that he can’t and he’s amazed. That makes me the strongest person ever in his eyes. He see’s me do things that others can’t. That makes me special in his eyes. Here’s a secret: I’m nothing special.
My point in all of this is that somewhere, somehow I made a difference in my son’s life. No matter how insignificant I am to the world, I’m 10 times as significant in my sons eyes. He loves me. He trusts me. He believes in me and that means all the world to me. I want him to know that I’ll always be there for him, no matter what.
The flip side to all of this is that one day he’ll know that I’m not Superman. I am going to fail him. Matter of fact, I’ve failed him already, but his loving and kind heart blocks the bad so he doesn’t see me that way. His innocent little heart and mind will one day know that I’m just a regular guy with all the faults and failures of anyone else. I’m nothing special, but if I continue to show him my unconditional love for him one thing will never fail: I’ll always be there for him and that power can’t be taken away unless God takes me home. That’s why it’s important that I take all of my power and knowledge and direct him to the One who truly is Super: Jesus.
Christ is the perfect embodiment of all things truly super. Provider, Healer, Sacrifice, Peace, Righteousness and Leader: these are the qualities that any parent or human being could ever hope for their children or themselves which is why if I do my job well, all of my children will one day know Christ. I may not be super at all, but while my son see’s me that way I’m going to continue to be the best dad and parent that I can be. Just call me Clark…