Although I’m 62 and won’t be giving birth to any more children any time soon, I recently reflected that God gives us children in many ways, some biologically and some spiritually. It is a privilege to build into the lives of young people and watch God work.
Last night I had such a sweet time teaching our housemate, a young man in his early 20s, how to cook a healthy meal. We worked together and celebrated by using our best dishes. He’s changed so much in the last few months, as the last year of mentoring from Jim and I seemed to really sink into his heart.
This morning I connected with the young single mom who lived with us before he did. We had a teary celebration of all that God is doing in her life. She is now a loving wife and a dedicated mom of three kids.
You may be overwhelmed with your own children right now, but keep your eyes out for the little ways in which you can encourage or build into others. Let your kids know what you’re up to (as appropriate) and invite them to pray with you for that person, or even to join you in befriending or blessing that person.
Why is this important, especially for parents who sometimes feel overwhelmed already?
- It puts an ax to the root of entitlement in our families as we all remember that we are blessed to be a blessing, and our lives do not revolve around always meeting our own needs first.
- It creates compassion for others as we and our kids enter into praying for other people that are struggling.
- Best of all, it blesses our Lord who passionately loves all hurting people.
Then, be open to God using you to significantly mentor young people in the future as your kids need less of your care. Our engagement with both the young man and the young mom has certainly taken lots of focus and effort, but it has been among the most rewarding things we’ve done. We’ve learned and grown along with them as God is clearly at work.
Apply It Now:
- Prayerfully consider: who might you reach out to and encourage this week, sharing the experience with your kids as much as possible?