My friend Joe McKeever was pushing his eight-year-old granddaughter in a swing one day, when she suddenly looked up and said, “I don’t want to have any children. It hurts too bad.” What he didn’t realize is that his daughter, this little girl’s mom, had been talking to her about childbirth, or as we used to call it, “explaining the birds and the bees.” Joe is one of the wisest men I know, but even he had a hard time coming up with a response. Finally, he said, “Yes, it does hurt. But then you have this beautiful baby, and it’s all worth it.” She replied, “You’re a man. What do you know?”
That girl is going to go far in life. But her point is more true than she knows. What do we (men or women) really know? It’s funny in a way to look back at some of the predictions that experts made this past year. They were convinced that it would be a record year for hurricanes, and it wasn’t. They didn’t predict a record year for the flu, and it is. And they were certain that the Texans would be one of the best teams in football this year (No comment). And those are experts! It is a scary world we live in. We don’t know what will happen tomorrow. As a pastor, I counsel people all the time who suffer sudden, unexpected losses: They get a phone call from the hospital informing them that their child has been in an accident; they get called into the boss's office to hear that due to budget shortfalls, their position is being eliminated; they visit the doctor for their regular checkup only to find out that something is seriously wrong. We fool ourselves into thinking that the man-made empires we construct are impervious, but they're actually houses of cards. There really is very little we can be certain of in this life.