What do a teenage girl and a 37 year old man have in common? Very very little. These two people I live with speak different languages. Ron speaks the language of hard work and logic, and gives love like a dad who wants to see his girl succeed. Chloe speaks drama and future obsession, someday hopes and becomings. She cries about things and cares about things that us grownups now know mean very little. But right now, they mean everything to her.
In a recent “discussion” about online homeschooling with Liberty Acadamy, Chloe’s biggest concerns were prom, a class ring, and a letterman jacket. To her, that’s the not so distant future; but to us, those trivial things happened so many years ago and have turned out to mean squat. That jacket sits in the closet. That prom dance wasn’t memorable. Those pictures are embarrassing.
In every “discussion” lately, I’ve found an appointed role: Mediator.
I have more in common with Chloe than Ron does, so I can stand with her on girly matters of the heart and dreamer personality priorities. I have more in common with Ron than Chloe does, so I can hear his parent’s heart even when he doesn’t seem patient enough or soft enough to her easily bruised feelings.
I translate, “Ron, when Chloe flipped out and started crying it was because she thought thus and such and she was afraid it would turn out like this and that’s her biggest fear….”
And then I translate back, “Chloe, daddy and I care about you so, so much! We are making sacrifices and stressing out to give you the best life possible! We see your incredible potential and we wish we hadn’t wasted our high school years. We think this is what’s best for you and we’ve lived longer and experienced more than you have….”
In the end, I feel like I’m the only one who walks away from the table understanding both sides.
Ron can’t think like a 9th grade girl who is growing up 20 years later than he did. Chloe doesn’t have a husband/daddy/provider bone in her body. They both know that the other one loves them, but many issues go unresolved in their hearts.
Sometimes, I get really tired of being the mediator.
Chloe said once after learning about emulsifiers in science class, “Mom, you’re the egg. Oil and water don’t mix, won’t mix. But if you add an emulsifier, an egg, they’ll finally come together. Your the egg, mom.”
Sick and tired of being the egg, I looked up and whined about it.
“Mediator?” He asked. “Oh yes. That’s a tough job. I know.”
I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity. This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth. For there is only one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus. He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone. This is the message God gave to the world at just the right time. 1 Timothy 2:1-6
This job of mediator that I have, is meant to point me somewhere. It’s meant to remind me:
1. God and I have no common ground without the Mediator Jesus Christ.
“Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior.” (Colossians 1:21)
“For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.” (Romans 5:10)
2. Jesus “is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.” (Hebrews 7:25) Jesus lives forever and has accepted the trying job of interceding for me.
3. Jesus became a man for this very purpose. So that I would have a Mediator. One who had been tempted in all the ways I have been yet remained sinless. (Hebrews 4:15) He took on my flesh and made Himself like me, so we could relate. Before that, God was unapproachable. Before Christ came, few men had friendship with God, and those few only because they had faith. But now, there is Someone to stand between simple me, young me, foolish me and Almighty Invisible God only wise and translate.
He whispers, “The Father took this from you because it wasn’t good for you. He loves you. He knows what’s best. He only gives His children good gifts. He’s seen the end, you can trust Him! This is the way, walk in it and trust.”
So I trust. I trust Him to report back to His Father, “This is my girl. I bought her. She’s good. Yes, I know she’s crying over trivial things right now, but she’s young. Give her time. She’ll get there. I’ll help her get there.”
Being a mediator between two who are often at odds is Christlike. If you are a mediator, you are standing in the gap, mimicking Christ. Learn from Him while you are there. Living in between two fighters—two wonderful, beautiful, strong headed people—is your chance to develop an appreciation for what Christ has done and is doing for you every day.
As Ron and I wade through the mire of parenting with love and try to persuade our girl about her great potential and how this new opportunity could be amazing, she’s hung up on a class ring. A trinket. It isn’t even a part of the conversation.
Next time you go to your Mediator with something you desperately need, something you can’t live without (a raise, a family vacation, a friend at work) consider this, what if it’s a trinket? What if your Father has different plans, plans that will do the great work of making you more like Him, plans to maximize your potential in His kingdom, but you can’t see the future goodness because you’re stuck on that class ring?