An Ode To Parenting

'10.24.2010 - No parents!' photo (c) 2010, Doug Butchy - license:

This week I’ve been staying with my cousins while their parents are out of town.  It’s pretty fun.  They’re awesome.

This week my schedule has also tripled…and they’re not even busy.

Seriously, folks, I don’t know how you do it.  Maybe it’s different going from birth all the way up to 14 & 15 which is where these kids are.  I jump in for a week here and a week there, and while it always goes smoothly and I love to spend the time with them, it makes me thankful for all of you who I see day in and day out taking your kids to school, practice, the doctor or wherever.

I’m sure it’s just second nature to you now, but I’ll bet at the beginning you were kind of like me.  I’ve got schedule for me and one for each of them and alerts set up in my phone calendar to remind me that I’m supposed to be somewhere else in a few minutes.  And I’m just here for a week.  You do this for about 18 years.

And to be perfectly honest, I’m not used to putting someone else’s schedule before mine.  Taking care of someone for even a short time can make you realize just how selfish you are…or I am.

I’ve learned that parenting may just be an ultimate form of service.

You want to serve and honor God?  Take care of your family.  He’s given you this incredible blessing, and He has a plan and purpose for not only you, but for your husband/wife and children, too.  Our purpose in this life is to try to live a life like Jesus and to help others do so, too.  What better way to serve God than to help raise up these children as followers seeking Christ and His will for their lives.

Teach them to seek knowledge.

Teach them to act justly and love mercy.

Teach them to love unsparingly.

And to those of you who are reading this who are parents, thank you.  You will probably never know the impact of your words.  There may be times when you feel like you’re failing, but that’s where grace comes in.  Your kids love you.  That won’t change.

I’ve got it easy this week.  They get up themselves.  They clean up after themselves.  They get their homework done.  They say please and thank you.  And we have fun.

I’m not writing this trying to tell you how to be parents because obviously I have no idea.  I’m writing it thanking all of you who are currently parents and those who are planning on having families.  You’re living out the gospel in your homes.

Thank you for being role models to your children and to those of us who may some day have our own.  Never believe for a minute that your service goes unnoticed…especially when a novice steps in for a week.

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  • Amy_book

    Teach them to love unsparingly.
    So thankful for parents who did just that.

  • Thanks for the encouragement. It has been an EXHAUSTING week and a little stressful. This was a nice reminder of what I am doing here.

    • I’m sure it’s tiring and stressful. Just remember you’re doing a good work. When the distractions come and it gets hard, remember what Nehemiah said when he was building the wall: “I am doing a good work and cannot come down.”

      Keep on keepin’ on, sister 🙂