fatherhood – Fragments Against Ruin http://tonywoodlief.com Sat, 07 Apr 2018 17:41:34 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.5 Amor fati http://tonywoodlief.com/2018/02/14/amor-fati/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2018/02/14/amor-fati/#comments Wed, 14 Feb 2018 11:27:43 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=5547 The thing about babies is they don’t care about your big plans. This past year I’ve had occasion to laugh at myself many times, a man like me, middle-aged and rooted in habit, suddenly a father again of newborns. Yes, that’s plural. Twins. Boys, of course, because for the rest of my life it seems …

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The soil of the heart http://tonywoodlief.com/2017/10/10/the-soil-of-the-heart/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2017/10/10/the-soil-of-the-heart/#comments Wed, 11 Oct 2017 02:11:45 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=5514 I don’t know much about Harvey Weinstein, but I now bear more information about him than I ever set out to possess. All I can think, when I see pictures of his piggish, blinking face, is that a rot must have set into that place in his heart where in other men reside generosity, protectiveness, …

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Easing the burden http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/03/14/easing-the-burden/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/03/14/easing-the-burden/#comments Fri, 14 Mar 2014 11:30:45 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=4386 “I’m sorry I shot you in the face with my Nerf gun. Do you forgive me?” My son knows he is supposed to ask for forgiveness, just as his brother knows that sooner or later he will be expected to say yes. He knows to say it because he knows he is supposed to forgive. …

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The world we show them http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/02/13/the-world-we-show-them/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/02/13/the-world-we-show-them/#comments Thu, 13 Feb 2014 18:20:28 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=4118 “Which world do you want to live in?” My oldest son, just days from his 14th birthday, glares back at me. Behind him in the car sit his brothers. Their hands are pressed to their faces. One of them is crying. Caleb begins to explain why he smacked them. Eli was needling him about something. Isaac, …

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The ministering parent http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/23/the-ministering-parent/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/23/the-ministering-parent/#comments Thu, 23 Jan 2014 18:43:45 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3794 Do you ever look on your children, and wish they had better than you? Back when we were shopping my embarrassingly confessional first book, my agent at the time told me I needed a ministry to accompany it. She said this as a realist, not an enthusiast. You need a platform to sell your wares. …

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The Cost of Calling: The Answer http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/09/the-cost-of-calling-the-answer/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/09/the-cost-of-calling-the-answer/#comments Thu, 09 Jan 2014 19:29:53 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3782 I come now to the question in my heart when I began: what can my sons say to a deceived and soul-sickened world? You might remember the story of a girl murdered that awful day in Columbine. As this story goes, one of the demoniac boys asked if she believed in God, and when she …

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The Cost of Calling: Compromises http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/02/the-cost-of-calling-compromises/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2014/01/02/the-cost-of-calling-compromises/#comments Thu, 02 Jan 2014 17:38:30 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3776 What is the cost of a calling? You can be called to be a parent; you can be called to be a plumber. But having a child, or picking up a pipe wrench, is not—in and of itself—to pursue a calling. The world is filled with parents and plumbers, after all, who don’t do their …

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The Cost of Calling http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/26/the-cost-of-calling/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/26/the-cost-of-calling/#comments Thu, 26 Dec 2013 20:34:42 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3764 Many parents carry within our hearts—sometimes in a cramped and even despairing corner—a vision of what we hope our children will become. This vision lives deeper than our wish that they be doctors or NFL quarterbacks, deeper even than our desire for their happiness. Our heart-dwelling hope is that they will be good and true, that …

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The professor in the home http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/17/the-professor-in-the-home/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/17/the-professor-in-the-home/#comments Wed, 18 Dec 2013 03:25:36 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3753 Every month, money flies from my checking account to the education savings accounts of my children, because I don’t want them to become hobos. This is one way I allay my fear the world will eat them up. It’s a mark of a good parent to worry over where—and whether—his child will go to college, …

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Crafted http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/09/crafted/ http://tonywoodlief.com/2013/12/09/crafted/#comments Tue, 10 Dec 2013 04:17:34 +0000 http://tonywoodlief.com/?p=3738 My mother died while I was at the beach and so while my children spent their days on the shore, I spoke by phone with the many professionals who position themselves between the living and the dead. My thirteen year-old wanted to build a sandcastle. He has so many preoccupations these days, perhaps chief among …

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