Earlier this week, I walked in on a movie my son and grandson were watching. The movie is called Real Steel. In the movie there’s a scene where the father who was briefly reconnected with his son whom he had been estranged from was leaving his son again.
Because the father did not feel prepared to take care of his son. Because he felt that his son deserved better than him, the father decided - without talking to the son first - that he was going to send his son back to live with his maternal aunt who had everything he felt his son deserved and more.
As the aunt arrived to take the little boy with her, the little boy, surprised to see her, asked his aunt what she was doing there. The aunt looked at the father, and the father proceeded to explain why the aunt was there. Needless to say, the little boy was shocked. He was disappointed. He was enraged.
In the midst of his rage, and after listening to his father’s less than acceptable explanations for leaving him yet again, the father says to the son as the son storms by him to get into the car with the aunt, “What do you want? What do you want me to do?”
The son’s epic reply made my eyes water. He said to his dad, “I want you to find fight me. That’s all I’ve ever wanted was for you to fight for me.”
FIGHT FOR ME! FIGHT FOR US! FIGHT FOR THIS!
Have you ever felt like that little boy? Have you wanted or wished that someone you loved loved you enough to fight for you? Have you ever run away because you didn’t know how to fight or didn’t feel like rolling up your sleeves, planting your feet, and fighting? Are you on the run now...even though everything in you is telling you to turn around, go back, and fight for what you know God gave you?
Whether you’re the runner or the person wishing the runner would return and fight for you, allow me to share what came up for me as I looked into that little boy’s eyes as well as into his dad’s eyes.
1. It is crucial that we think about the commitments we make BEFORE we make them, particularly commitments that involve and affect other people.
2. It is always easier to give up than it is to fight yet fighting through introduces us to a better version of our self.
3. Sometimes it is the case that a relationship or a thing has run its course and as a result leaving is better than staying, but only an honest heart and an open my mind can help us to know this.
4. Too many of us are guilty of putting so much energy into fighting the wrong fight that we have no energy left to give to the right fight.
5. The pain we leave people with when we invite them into our world, go out of our way to make them feel welcome, and then dismiss them when more of us is required than we want to give us ours to fix and make right.
I believe that we all deserve to be loved and loved right. I also believe that God has given each of us the capacity to love right. For some, learning to love right is hard and messy. For others, it’s easy and enjoyable. At the end of the day, the reality is, there is no experiencing love without fighting for love.