My oldest recently completed kindergarten, and I’ve been musing a bit on the rapid passage of time. Wise, white-haired, nostalgic grandmothers caution us that it all passes so quickly, but you don’t realize the startling truth of that honest reality until you watch your own little ones growing before your eyes. The days pass slowly at times, but the years … those years fly by.
If I teach my son how to read and write, that 1+1=2, that whites should be washed on hot, and how to function as a productive part of society, yet I fail to teach him the more important heart matters, then I have fallen short. Because my role as a mother to this little boy is to raise him to be a man who loves the Lord and to have a heart that blesses others out of the outpouring of that love.
And so I’ve been thinking a bit on things I want my son to know, life lessons that I hope he learns through the beautiful process of growing up in this lovely, mess of a family. I pray that through the expression of love and the modeling of forgiveness, these are the lessons that root deep into his heart.
13 LIFE LESSONS I WANT MY SON TO KNOW
1) Bravery isn’t measured by brute strength, nor is it the absence of fear, for fear is a common human emotion. Bravery is a heart willing to step up and out in spite of that fear. Take heart, be brave.
2) Society will try to tame your God-given thirst for adventure, but the world needs men who will rise to the challenge and ride to the rescue; that just may be you! Don’t tame your adventurous spirit.
3) And yet don’t resist the quiet, and don’t shun the weak. For beauty is found in quiet, and God’s strength is revealed in weakness.
4) Respect nature, immerse yourself in it. For God’s creation is the best measuring stick used to reveal our smallness and His greatness.
5) You will have both successes and failures. Be humble in the former, graceful in the latter.
6) Practice forgiveness.
7) Model strength through service.
8) Listen attentively; speak carefully.
9) God has given you a tender, compassionate heart, but there will be circumstances that will threaten to harden it. Don’t let the world steal your joy. Choose instead to let those circumstances flood you with compassion to pour out to a hurting world.
10) See girls not for their charm and beauty, but for their heart. Treat them with the respect due a sister in Christ. As their brother in Christ, serve them humbly.
11) The world will compete fiercely for your attention, and endless attractions have the potential to capture your interest. Only one thing satisfies. Choose God first, the rest will fall into place.
12) Take pride in a job well done. There is honor in honest work. Work always as though you are working for the Lord, not man.
13) Know that I will always love you more than my meager words could ever express. No matter your age, no matter your size, wherever your life may lead, you will always be my little boy, and I will love you with the ceaseless endurance that defines a mother’s love for her son.
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