As I have moved along through out the day, for some reason I have had the future of our students on my mind. I think it’s because school’s out and it’s graduation time. Bart and I have seen many kids graduate and go off to college over the last several years.
I remember a few years ago having a conversation with a few of our Mom’s of kids in the student ministry. We were discussing their desire for their kids to have a passion for the Lord, to know scripture, to do the “right” things in life. When I asked them about their kids desires once graduating (they were Seniors), the mom’s were all stressed about their GPA’s, what colleges they would get into, what they thought their kids major should be because there are more jobs available in that field.
When I asked them what their kids passion has been growing up, they looked at me all crazy? A few looked offended.
But I was actually quite confused. They had just told me how they wanted their kids to love the Lord. And in the same breath, placed a priority on what would make their kid more “successful” in the world, rather than finding and pursuing their calling from God, whatever that may be.
I think, the problem here might just be fear. What parent actually wants their child to grow up and have to struggle financially? To be without things? What parent choses the “difficult” path for their child, and better yet… encourages it?
I am not saying that choosing God’s path, following your passion, obeying your calling will lead to financial hardships. But by encouraging this road, rather than one that will promise “security”, takes away a certain control we only think we have.
I get this, more so now than I did when this conversation to place a few years ago. I have a son of my own now that I only want the very best for.
But what does my “very best” for him look like?
When I think about Little B growing up and what he will do in this world, I don’t automatically envision his house, his office, his wardrobe, his car, his 401K. I think about what his heart will delight in. I wonder what will he be passionate about. I pray for courage for him to follow God’s leading wherever that may take him. I pray for wisdom to discern God’s plan for him. I pray that he will trust God.
Just as my prayer for Bart and I has always been to go wherever God leads us, this is my prayer for Little B.
What are we encouraging our kids to do with their life?
As we stress the importance of having good grades to our kids, of going to college and getting a degree… I hope that as parents we stress even more the importance of finding God’s calling on their life. Encourage your kid to find what they are passionate about, to discern if God is leading them to pursue it more.
Only this can lead to true joy for your kid. And I hope, as a parent, that is what we really want for them.
Joy over Success
Purpose over Security
A love for God over a love for the things the world has to offer.
I can’t help but wonder what our country would be like if as parents we took more of a proactive role in this with our children.
What would our children grow up to be like if we were training them on the promises that God has given us for our life? What would the depression rate and suicide rate and divorce rate and abortion rate be if we encouraged our kids – while they were kids- to listen to their heart, to follow their desires because our desires come from God and only by following him can we have perfect peace and pure joy!
What if we encouraged our kids to take risks? To not worry about failing, because we cannot fail when we serve a God who has already fought the fight and won the war. What if we told our kids that taking a risk really isn’t a risk because God promises to work ALL THINGS together for GOOD? (Romans 8:28 paraphrase)
Do you believe God means what he says?
What if we encouraged our kids to live their life only for God? What if we showed our kids how to live a life only for God?
I imagine, as school has ended for the year and graduations are taking place, that many parents are talking with their kids about their futures. I pray we remember what true success is as we discuss how to achieve it with our children. It takes a faithful parent to encourage a faithful child.