Episode 384 - Theme & Variations

Episode 348 · April 22nd, 2024 · 25 mins 51 secs

About this Episode

Mary Zahl was recently the guest on an episode of a podcast known as "The Brothers Zahl" (out this summer). The subject of the cast was parenting, and I can think of no better illustration of a good parent.

Mary listed three core themes of enduring motherhood/fatherhood that feel utterly right to me. They are (1) complete dependability when your child is little; (2) no control or pressure when your child is growing -- let them or her pursue their own interests; and (3) try to detach from your grown child's life most of the time, tho' not always. Sometimes -- if very occasionally -- you may have to intervene.

I was awed by my wife's reflections, the mother of our three grown sons.

I also couldn't help theologizing a little, for each of her three themes has a direct relation to the Christian Gospel. (1) mirrors the One-Way Love of God's Grace. (2) suggests the continuing solution of Grace to the problem of Law. (3) connects the "Eastern"-sounding insight of non-attachment with the Christian fact of God's Incarnation -- God's personal intervention in this septic world.

This cast is also a sort of pre-op moment for the Mockingbird Conference, which begins this Thursday in Manhattan. Do join us if you can. Mary and I will be there, and hundreds of others, too. I'll speak about parenting, tho' Mary (by my side) is the best authority on that front.

This cast is dedicated to Larry Brudi and Bob Smith, and reverentially, to Dickey Betts.