Prepping for Launch
If you haven’t noticed around here, I’m a goal-oriented person.
I’m pretty good at making a plan or goal. Keeping or following through with the goal on the other hand is sometimes a 50/50 bet.
What moves a goal to actuality for me is passion and conviction.
For the last year or so I’ve been a part of an exercise program called Camp Gladiator. Side note here, I would not call myself athletically inclined. Nor had I ever called exercising fun before this workout system. Though my goal with working out is physical and mental health I had no idea what a mental battle this goal would be.
I’ve learned a lot about making sacrifices (like my sleep time) and sticking to a goal despite what my brain tells me. (I can work out, when it’s 25 degrees outside) For better or worse this type of persistence is new to me. Like most of us when a goal lacks conviction the chance of success decreases greatly. Same goes for what we believe in. If what we were taught by our parents lacks conviction and ownership then the chances of them holding to those beliefs’ wanes.
Let it not be so for my kiddos.
It is my greatest prayer and desire for my kids to be fully devoted followers of Christ. Not because “Our Family is a Christian Family”, but because I have found abundant life within a relationship with the Lord, and I wish that same joy and peace for my boys. But their choices and beliefs have to be built on their own convictions not on my desires.
The research is scary – studies show that as many as 70% of Christian students leave the church during college. (Source) One of the reasons Summit.com list as one reason teen leave the church is that they have no grounding in a biblical world view.
So how do we train up our kids toward a conviction all their own?
I believe, it’s by allowing questions. Questions from our kids and being willing and able to ask hard questions of our kiddos. We tell our kids that God knows the answer to every question, and he doesn’t mind being asked and neither do I. Being teachable and willing to explore the questions our kids bring us, reveals a confidence that is desirable.
I do this because I want my kids to be like dandelions when they grow up. I want to launch then out into the world and be resilient, bright, joyful, and invasive in our culture. To be a flower blooming in winter, a city on a hill, and a light in the darkness.
My conviction is that my kids need to own their faith. To be able to answer hard questions from friends and challenge them lovingly. Which takes tenacity and conviction. As well as a willingness to welcome questions I may not have the answer to, and take the time to explore those questions with them.
What steps are you taking to launch prep your kiddos? With any type of launch there’s a lot of preparation before blast off. Prep, Plan and be Intentional.
We as both adults and parents need to be aware of the hot topics that are facing our culture and know how to response to the questions our kids bring us.
Because our culture has an answer to the questions, but it is rarely an answer that has God at its source.
This doesn’t mean scouring the internet for every news event, but to be informed and willing to explore ideas with your kids.
When my oldest was in first grade was the first time I was asked “why do some kids have two mommies?”. I know opinions vary here even in Christian communities (not a topic I plan on discussing here), but because I was prepared the question didn’t throw me. I was ready with a simple and God-centered child friendly response.
Places I go to get answers to hard questions
Daily Citizen - Your Christian News Source (focusonthefamily.com)
I’m a planner. I find great joy in making a plan and executing said plan (even if there are hiccups). With having three boys there were several subjects I wanted to be proactive. Body safety, pornography, and sex, were the top three. I had to be very proactive here, and search for the right tools to tackle these subjects alongside my husband. Every year before school starts, we walk through Good Pictures, Bad Pictures (or Good Picture, Bad Pictures Jr) with my boys.
What are the topics you want your kids prepared for? How can you make a plan for a conversation about those things?
God Made me
The Story of Me Series
Good Pictures and Bad Pictures
Mary Jo Ridley’s Books
We can prep and plan until we’re blue in the face but what impact our kids the most in their walk of faith is to see those, they are influenced by serving and relying on the Lord. Nothing will speak louder than our actions to communicate what their parents believe.
Where are you serving?
How often do your kids catch you reading your Bible?
How often do you pray together?
I think the hardest thing to remember is that we can to all ‘the things’, and our kids not choose to follow the Lord. Parenting is a big step in faith. Because as our kids grow older they will be able to make their own choices, which might not be the ones we wish for.
But I am reminded on Moses, and how he was nursed by his mother for several years. Her teachings, care, and love let him have a heart for the Israelites. And in God’s timing lead them out of Egypt.
That’s what we can do as parents. Encourage and teach, but the rest is between God and out Kiddos.