Chronicles of Sadie

Baby-Proofing Your Life

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Unless little Sadie decides to make her appearance early, I will be a father in about eight days. Since the day we found out we were pregnant, Laura and I have been making drastic transformations to our home. These changes aren’t confined to the baby’s room, either. The knowledge that our little girl is on her way has changed the very face of every part of our house.

The alterations began with paint—and lots of it! I lavished the walls of Sadie’s room and bathroom with colors painstakingly and deliberately chosen by her two parents over hours of dinners, discussions, and trips to various home improvement superstores. The color that resulted would be considered some sort of bluish-green to the normal observer, but we’re the first ones to kindly inform you that it’s actually called “Celery Ice.” Come on, it’s so obvious! Celery and ice are found together all the time in nature.

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Next came the furniture. Our trip to the baby furniture store reminded me of one specific truth I learned back when Laura and I were planning our wedding. The principle is simple: normal, everyday items that you are used to purchasing for reasonable amounts of money suddenly become extravagantly expensive when adding the label “wedding” in front of their names. For example, normal flowers might cost someone twenty dollars. ”Wedding flowers,” on the other hand, two-hundred dollars. A glass of water? Free, of course. A glass of “wedding” water? Just hand over your wallet!Screen Shot 2013-04-02 at 7.28.57 PM

Apparently, the same principle applies to baby items, especially furniture. After a meticulous process of baby furniture shopping, I sold one of my kidneys and made the down payment. The next amazing thing about this particular baby furniture is that not only did we buy it at a store located about forty-five minutes from our house, but they also don’t deliver and don’t do assembly. I suppose they feel that it is part of the “dad test” or something. So, after hauling the ginormous boxes all the way to our house in a huge, borrowed truck, I conned one of my good friends into helping me offload the cargo and finagle the millions of pieces into the baby’s room.

Next came assembly. After fourteen hours of translating the instruction booklet into English, driving to Lowe’s to get the parts they left out, praying repeatedly for forgiveness, meditating on Ecclesiastes and the futility of life, and watching my wife remove all the sharp objects from the room, the furniture was finally put together. See, that wasn’t so bad!

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I would tell you all about the personal saga of installing the chandelier in her room, but some of you may be young and it would not be appropriate.

As I have worked to prepare my home for my new daughter, my focus is always safety. I see things now that I never thought of before. I see sharp corners that could be hazardous and I see slippery places that could cause her to fall. I see dangerous chemicals that must be locked up now and steep stairways that must be fenced off to protect her from toppling topsy-turvy. As a father, I am literally planning the protection of my child.

Psalm 91: 3 (NLT)  also speaks of the protection of a Father. For he will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. Like the possible dangers of my house, God also prepares the path of his children to guard them from hazards. In the case of this verse, the Psalmist uses the word “trap.” God is not just protecting us from random dangers in this world, but he is literally keeping us from the deliberately set traps of the enemy. I picture someone walking through the woods completely unaware that a hunter has set a dangerous bear trap on the trail. Without the guidance of someone who understands the path, our little “life’s hike” will most certainly end at the emergency room or worse.

This verse also uses the term “rescue.” This would indicate that God’s protection is more than just preemptive; it is also redemptive. In other words, sometimes we do mess up and fall into the enemy’s trap, but God doesn’t just sit back and say, “Well, I tried to tell you! Now you’re on your own!” No, God also rescues us in the midst of our mistakes, prying open the seemingly impenetrable trap of the enemy.

The last part of the verse speaks of healing. When we do fall, we experience wounds that can become infected and fester. Our Father is more than just our Rescuer; he’s also our Healer. This healing can be physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual. Some physicians specialize in internal medicine, but God is certified in multiple fields of eternal medicine.

So you can rest today in the fact that your Father is walking ahead of you through the house with his paintbrush, tool belt, and safety manual. His goal is to “enemy-proof” your life so you won’t fall prey to the traps or inadvertently stumble across the poison. But even if you do, he stands poised to tenderly tend to your wounds with his great-big-fatherly hands.

I wonder if God does furniture assembly?

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