Thursday, November 29, 2012

Encourage them to Go

This series has taken a little longer than I thought it would. If you have stuck with me throughout, thank you!!

This last one is one of the most important:

#10 Don't Squelch or Limit what God is doing in the lives of your Kids

At Vacation Bible School last summer, the kids were trying to raise money for a local charity. As we were getting read to go to one of the last classes, one of my kids came down with his piggy bank, proceeded to take the majority of the money out and asked if he could give it to the charity that night.

It was a sweet, generous gesture.

Would you like to know what my first thought was?

I wanted to ask him if he was sure he wanted to give that much.

I wanted to limit his generosity because it felt like he was making too big of a sacrifice, you know, so he could spend that $20 on some cheap toy instead.

Thankfully, God talked me down before I talked him down. I ended up encouraging him in his giving. Even though, to my shame, I felt the desire to hold him back.

I was talking to a dear friend whose kids are grown about this topic and asked her what they did to encourage a global perspective in their kids. She told me,

I don't think we did anything specific. But, I do think that as we saw how God was growing our kids' hearts, we tried not to squelch or limit what he was doing. As parents, when we are students of our child's design, and see what their "bent" is, we want to encourage and challenge them to explore possibilities. For example, when our daughter talked about being a missionary when she was in 5th grade, we told her we thought that was great.
Frankly this can be easier said than done. Encouraging my daughter to be a missionary is one thing. But then, watching her become one and be placed in potentially dangerous situations is another. I hope when the time comes I will encourage my kids in what God has called them to no matter what I feel on the inside, even when doing so compromises their safety.

Christians are not called to live a safe life. We are called to obey where we are called to go no matter what.

When we see a call being placed on our kids, let's don't try to hold them back. Instead, let's encourage them to go.

That last sentence was the perfect place to stop, but at the risk of creating a post that is too long I want to add one more thought before I close out this series on global perspective.

You might follow all ten of these suggestions to encourage a global perspective in your kids and one hundred more and there is a chance that your kids will not care in the slightest. We can do all the right things as parents, but in the end our kids have free will. We are not responsible for what they choose. We are responsible to faithfully parent and teach our kids God's truths.

They must choose how they will live it out.

One of my kids had a small excerpt published in our local paper. The topic was "How would you spend one million dollars?" I immediately thought of all the orphans he would help. Instead he wrote this:

"I would buy a Nerf sword and Nerf gun. I would buy lots of toys at garage sales."

It is a hilarious answer and even if the thought of giving money away did not enter his sweet head, at least he was being frugal with his purchases. We do our best to teach and broaden his perspective, but in the end it is up to him to choose.

Thanks again for following along with this little series. If you have any additional ideas to share, please do! I appreciate every comment you have made. So many of you are living this out and I am so thankful for the examples you are to me as we journey on together.


Kirk and Keri Plattner said...

Megan~ I've loved and been challenged by these posts..Thanks!
Also, so excited you are one step closer to Zak!

Kirk and Keri Plattner said...

I've loved and been challenged by these posts..Thanks! Also, SO excited you are one step closer to Zak!