Parenting with the End in Mind

This week I got the opportunity to write an article for a local magazine here in Clarksville. It is called the Clarksville Family. It was...

This week I got the opportunity to write an article for a local magazine here in Clarksville. It is called the Clarksville Family. It was about Parenting with the end in mind. I completely using the orange ideas and philosophy and thoughts behind the article. I really just shared kind of what that looks like in my families life and a little about our process of deciding where we wanted the end to be.

It was a little long so I have cut some for those of you who will not even begin to read a long blog, but its still a little long sorry about that..

Hope you enjoy.

So not that long ago my wife and I sat down and discussed where we want our children to end up if we have our way. We know that life is a race but we no longer want to run as though we don’t know where the finish line is. Or if it even exist. We don’t want our children’s goal to be just finishing their race. We want them to win and make an impact on this planet. We want to point them in the direction that we feel like they should go. So we talked with each other about it for a while and came up with these three things.

Love Jesus – we want our children to know and love Jesus with all they have. We want them to know what it is to have authentic relationship with their Creator and Savior. We want them to experience the beauty God in their lives.

Love People – We want our kids to cherish and love people. We want them to understand that the same God creates us all and He loves us more than mere words can express. The flip side of that is that we as people are who deliver that message. Not by words but by our actions. We want our kids to see people as God sees them. We want them to love people as God loves them.

Change the World – We don’t have any ideas of grander for our kids to be president or over throw governments. I only know that if they allow the love of my God to be shown through them that love will unquestionably change their world and the world of the people around them. Every impact changes the world in some way. We just want them to make their impact as big and meaningful as possible.

Here is the trick though. These are all really nice and cute things to say. I mean we could even make a little cheer or something. Have a special little handshake that only we know where we say these key phrases so that they are ingrained in our kid’s minds. But if we never lead them to live this principle out then they will spend the rest of their lives running around saying a lot of cool cheers and know all the right answers but they wont live like they can. They will not even begin to tap into their potential. If our influence does not point them in that direction chances are they will go their own way.

My wife and I have discovered that if we want them live for those things then we have to be intentional in leading them there throughout their life. We have to parent as though we know where we are going. Our actions right now have to be in alignment with where we want to finish.

 If we want our kids to love Jesus then we have to love Jesus. More than that we have to be willing to be real and let our children see us hurt and struggle. Let them see us happy and sad. Don’t doubt that when we let Children see life can be rough but at the end of the day God is still good and in control that it speaks into their lives. Our Children will most clearly see God through our ups and downs if we let Him work. Those times will be spiritual markers for their lives where they saw God show Himself true.

If we want them to love people then we have to display that we love people. We have to be intentional about giving them opportunities to love those around them. Talk is cheap to kids in this culture. If you love people they will know it.  

If we want them to change the world then we have show them they can. God has a huge story and he wants all of us to be a part of it. I have to show my children that it is ok for them to risk and let God do what He does. If we let them see that God can use them to accomplish huge things then they will. They will change the world.

What are the things we you want for children when they become adults?

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