We, as parents, learn to make the most of the teachable moments that come our way, trusting that somehow in the chaos of parenthood we will play a part in shaping young lives.
When my three young daughters exploded into quarrels, my heart was often overwhelmed with the ceaseless task of playing referee and trying to teach them about relationships, respect and forgiveness. As my husband coached the young leaf-rakers, bed-makers and puppy-caregivers in the details of good work ethics, moans and groans could often be heard, and he doubted whether anything he said was actually being heard. As we counted out the coins for each of our girls’ weekly allowance, my husband and I couldn’t help but wonder if money-management skills and the blessing of being a giver were concepts that these young minds were capable of grasping.
Our three daughters are now beautiful young women who dream big and work hard, encouraging our hearts as we watch them live out some of the life skills we endeavored to impart during their younger years.
Our “middlest” is a peacemaker, offering forgiveness to siblings, parents and friends as she learns that life is a blessing even when it is painful. Our youngest pushes her body to the limit on her swim team and works diligently at her part-time office job, exemplifying the concept that a job worth doing is worth doing well. Our oldest lives away at college but sends her tithe checks home for our church each month, believing that God blesses those who give.
As we watch them grow, my husband and I feel fulfilled knowing that life lessons were actually learned amid the chaos. So take heart; the skills you teach today will equip your children to be both blessed and a blessing. You, too, will smile when the moans and groans have passed, the life skills have been learned and your grown children are finding teachable moments in their own world of parenthood.
Pam Woody and her husband live in Colorado.