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Mar 2010

Savor the Seasons of Parenting

A Virginia dad of 14- whose youngest is a teenager now- recently wrote an article on appreciating the seasons of parenting.  The sermon Sunday challenged all of us to rest in God’s sovereignty and to respond to our present life circumstances with joy and worship.  In the midst of our problem solving as parents, we need to be reminded to pause and breathe deeply the life God has given us…however difficult or joyful it may be.

In the early days of our parenthood, it sometimes seemed that life would go on forever as it was going then. We’d never have any money, we’d never have a child old enough to babysit the siblings, and we’d never have air conditioning in the house or own a dependable car. I was so tense as a young man that I made life harder for myself and for those I loved. I let the stresses of life rob me of a lot. Ben Franklin was right when he said that there’s “no putting an old man’s head on a young man’s shoulders.” Still, I’m irritated with myself for letting seasons go by without fully tasting the days.

I’ve heard Marilyn say that life was tougher when she had three children than it was with eight, because when she had only three, there were no big helpers. Two were in diapers, and firstborn Rickey was a little fireball. Now, our youngest is almost a teenager and we have young adults in the house who pretty much run the home operation for us. We are also blessed with some wonderful children-in-law and grandchildren, but the extra needs of the family are felt, too. It takes a tremendous expenditure of time, finances, and effort to do what we do.

But by now we know it won’t always be this way. We’ve had better times and worse times and probably both kinds will visit us again. All we know for sure is that everything that comes to pass, passes….

If you’re a young parent with young children, your life isn’t easy. That’s why God gives you those responsibilities while you have the energy of youth with which to handle it all. If you don’t mind a friendly word of advice from a guy who has spent the last few decades trading energy for experience, I’d ask you to stop and smell the roses. They’re right there in front of you–in your preschooler’s cheeks. Beware of the tendency to get wrapped up in getting everything done; it will never be all done. This season of your life, like every season of life, will pass before you know it. Savor it while it’s here.

Turn off the vacuum cleaner for a minute and go hug your kids.

You can read the entire article here.


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