Three feet of ballet pink safely relaxed in my lap, a spectator to the group of dancers she should be practicing with. That’s precisely how we spent the first day of ballet class. Forty-five minutes of sideline snuggling with my precious girl contemplating how beautifully God hard-wired her, how much there is yet to learn about my little Miss and her brother. That may be the flow of the next seven weeks…
Shrouded by the daily demands of engaged parenting I’m easily a single-track mind: teach and train. While I don’t have their college, career or extracurricular activities picked out, I know what kind of people I want them to be.
Pressure to be is just as stifling as pressure to excel in sports or academics. Safe to say, we’ve all witnessed someone blinded to a heart, the wife pouting about her husband running late (though he stopped to get her flowers), the kid in time-out because his parents couldn’t hear the full story of a hero rescuing his crew.
Looking into the searching eyes of my kids, it’s clear to see they are not my puppet to control but little people who need direction in developing their gifts. Left to my own devices, I’d miss out on their kids humor, playful banter and bright spirits.
Pricked by an insistent need to know my kid’s hearts inside-out, knowing why they choose something not merely what, I wondered, how well do I know my kids? Do they feel known by me? I don’t want to be so immersed in the goal that I miss out on enjoying how God hard-wired my kids.
Though they may have strong tendencies to behave like mom or dad, our kids are uniquely themselves. Now is the time to let our kids shine for who they are, revel in who they are growing into and enjoy the strengths they bring to the table, but to do this, we must know who they are inside-out.
Someday we will be old, our sons men braving the world, our daughters ladies charging forward each courageously in their own ways. Will we know them or will we know our version of who we think they are?
Heart Check: Who do you need to get to know deeper?
Up Friday: Five ways to get to know your kids