Friday, December 14, 2012


When I was growing up, my father and I used to race go karts. To be completely honest, this is when life felt like it actually started. We started racing when I was around 14 years old. Up to that point, most of the activities in our family were done, well, as a family. I had competed in other sports like basketball and baseball, but they didn't compare to racing with my dad. In basketball I had 4 other guys around me and we tried to move in one motion. We were led by a good man, our coach, and he did his best to bring us together as a team. This was a great time period of learning how to work together and take orders from an older man other than my father.

Racing go-karts was much different though. It came down to my dad and me. We were the team and we had to depend on each other. In my first couple years of racing, it was about learning and having fun. Karts and motors weren't that expensive and we got to the track in our reliable Dodge Caravan. I didn't know it at the time, but my father was using this time to train and mold me. Each time I went out on the track, he made sure I was ready and told me I could do great. "Watch your speed around those turns." "Sometimes you have to go slow, to go fast." "Careful, the track is slick so get those tires warmed up first." He would give me a high five, fist bump or a hand pat on the helmet afterwards. He'd ask me if I was ready, I would nod, and he would start the engine up. I would sit there in the kart just staring at the track in front of me. Thinking about what my father had just told me; thinking about the last race and maybe what I did wrong; thinking about the fast kid and how I could possibly beat him this race. Out on the track, it was up to me. My father could give me the best kart, the fastest motor and finest equipment; but if I didn't drive smart, we would have nothing. My foot and leg would always be slammed to the gas pedal. Sometimes I wouldn't realize how hard I was pushing it down and would have to relax myself. I'm surprised the pedal never broke on me. In and out of turns; dust from the dirt track flying past me and my eyes never leaving the man in front of me. I'd finish the race, sometimes satisfied and sometime disappointed, and head back into the infield. No matter what, my father would be there to see my out of my kart. No matter what happened in the race, he would help me get the kart back to the stand and loaded up. No matter what, he told me I did a good job and raced a good race.

Affirm means to express agreement with or commitment to; uphold; support. I am reminded of a time the Father spoke to His Son in the book of Mathew: "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased". Our example of the father and son relationship is built upon love and affirmation. With just a few simple words, fathers were shown how to speak to their sons. As a son and soon to be father, this verse will be at the forefront of my thoughts. Just as my father affirmed me each time I went onto the track and got off the track; I want to make sure I affirm. It wasn't just about the speed, the sound of engines roaring everywhere or the thick smell of gasoline in the air; it was about a relationship, mentorship, sonship. I will always remember those days on the track and I even look forward to the day I can put my son in the seat, with Grandpa as the crew chief. 

We've all gone through affirmation at one point or another. 
Describe the process of your affirmation. Good or bad.


  1. Good insights for human fatherhood and our eternal childhood.

    Grace and peace.

  2. Very well said. Thank you for sharing!