In the movie The Family Man, Nicholas Cage's character, who is a single, high wheeling and high living investment banker, wakes one morning to find himself married, a father, and working in a boring job in the suburbs. He likes this movie. In His favorite scene the family goes to the mall to shop for the necessities that never end while raising growing kids. Cage spots a high end men's clothing store like the ones he shopped at during his pre-responsibility life. A melt down (husband), a call to reality (wife), and an argument ensues. The gist of the husband's frustration is centered on the fact that there is a need for his child's new shoes and it outweighs his wants. The husband voices his devastation about his lost life with the line "where are my mary janes?"
He has never cared what He wore, or what He drives, or really even where He lives, as long as they have been adequate for His needs. It seems like life is a never ending series of family needs. I know there are things He dreams about; places He'd like to travel, toys He'd like to indulge in, T-times He wishes he could make, and even the ability to make seemingly insignificant frivolous purchases, but He doesn't do it. I know the argument that when you choose to have a family and children you willingly give up the freedom of being selfish. That's a perfectly sound argument and I'm not suggesting anything different. However, if I am being honest, I have had self-indulgent thoughts. I may not voice them, and if I am thinking straight I would never trade my family for the actuality. But, those feelings still creep in every once in a while, and I know He feels the same way.
You think that as your children get older they will become less and less costly. This is a fable, one that keeps us going. While some financial burdens are lessened with time they are counterbalanced by new ones we never imagined. Its as if we are making a symbolic trip to the mall on a never ending monthly rotation, and it ends with Him never getting His mary janes. He knows its His choice. But He must feel like His mary janes are just always out of reach. What I appreciate is that He could choose otherwise. I have seen other families lives devastated through selfish purchases. Day after day He accepts the financial choices He made when He started a family, and the obligations that go with them.
He is selfless...
...one more reason I love Him.