He did not choose the easy part

I'm a road cyclist. When I'm on my bike I'm generally going high intensity and listening to podcasts (bone conduction headset, naturally, to listen for traffic) is difficult if I intend to retain a whole lot from nuanced conversation. There are certain some podcasts that are amenable, but not enough to fill my rides. In prior years I'd crank up something hard (typically, System of a Down) and milk an extra mile or two per hour from the intensity (not kidding!) 

This year I decided to try something - after listening to amenable podcasts, I listen to hymns and try to sing along. Well, depending on heart rate it isn't really "singing" so much as mouthing and mentally assenting, but using as many senses as possible to "read, mark, learn and inwardly digest". The rotation right now is "Dear Christians One and All Rejoice", "Salvation Unto Us has Come" and "Christ, the Life of All the Living." Mixed success - I find myself not remembering verses so much as couplets... start out the first word or two of a couplet and I can recall it, and perhaps the next one. I've only been at it for about 3 weeks so I'll give it a few more and test myself.

That's not the point of this post, rather I found a couplet I've been meditating on, on and off the bike:

"He turned to me a Father's heart / He did not choose the easy part"

From Verse 3 of Dear Christians One and All Rejoice:

But God beheld my wretched state

Before the world’s foundation,

And, mindful of His mercies great,

He planned my soul’s salvation.

He turned to me a father’s heart;

He did not choose the easy part,

But gave His dearest Treasure.

Doesn't that nail it though? As a father, and a husband, faithfulness in our vocation seems to be about not choosing the easy part. 

  • The easy part is letting the State educate your children
  • The easy part is letting the Pastor catechize your children
  • The easy part is letting the TV raise your kids
  • The easy part is letting your kids fit in with their secular friends
  • The easy part is not loving your wife with sacrificial love as Christ loved the church
  • The easy part is accepting a complementary role to your wife rather than providing the trust to allow her to submit to you
  • The easy part is accepting you wife's libido and supplementing with self-gratification
The authority of the State and the authority of the Pastor flows out of the consent of the Father. As a husband and father, you will be held accountable for the raising of your children in the fear and admonition of the Lord (Eph 6:4). You will be accountable to your love and care of your bride as Christ loves and cares for the Church (Eph 5:25). Your private sins to smooth over the marriage will be held accountable not as peacemaking but as an abdication of leadership. I say this not from a moral high ground but from my personal failings as a father and a husband. 

Don't choose the easy part.