As parents we have responsibility to love and nurture and provide and teach and train our children to become responsible, moral, hardworking, creative, authentic adults and contributors to society. Most of us try to do something like that, with varying degrees of competency and success.
But I’ve found that God seems to have an equally important role for our children in our lives. I will try to share a few of the things my kids have taught me. This lesson comes from my #2 child, Michelle.
From the day she was born, Michelle has not been in a hurry. She slept much of her first year (I don’t wake sleeping babies). She cuddled, laughed, listened a lot and talked enough.
She played quietly, explored, created, painted, invented, rescued.
But she never rushed.
Probably the words she heard most from me, after “I love you.” and “Please forgive me.” were “Hurry up, we’re late.”
“We will be late to church, Michelle.” “Carpool is waiting, Michelle.” “We need to get to soccer practice, Michelle.”
Nothing hurried her. But I know I frustrated her, discouraged her, hurt her.
Over time, I began to hear the Lord whispering, “What’s your hurry, Judy?”
And he reminded me of those famous sisters, Mary and Martha.
Martha was focused on getting dinner ready. She rushed around, fretting that Mary wasn’t helping her.
And Mary? She was enjoying Jesus. Listening, learning, reflecting.
Slowly Michelle’s ability to live in the present, her not hurrying to the future, began to rub off on me. I still like to get things done, and I usually have a long list. But I have learned to let things go, to stop for people in my life, to leave tasks for another day.
I don’t get as much done. But I enjoy the journey so much more.
C 2011 Judy Douglass