30/30: 41%. What I Learned From My Kids.

13 05 2008

I came across this 2007 survey from Pew Research Center in prepping for last weeks mother’s day message. Today only 41% of Americans now say that children are “very important” to a successful marriage, down sharply from the 65% who said this in a 1990 survey.

“Indeed, children have fallen to eighth out of nine on a list of items that people associate with successful marriages – well behind “sharing household chores,” “good housing,” “adequate income,” “happy sexual relationship,” and “faithfulness.” Back in 1990, when the American public was given this same list on a World Values Survey, children ranked third in importance.”

Why do you think this is? I believe we live in country that self centered to the max and kids have a way of disrupting our plans. Although kids are challenging, messy, difficult, trying, exhausting, expensive, frustrating, completely mess up your plans, and totally disrupt your schedule, I have found that children are by far one of the most rewarding things about being married. They are one of the most rewarding things about life. Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a real blessing. Psalm 127:3 What’s amazing is I didn’t know the blessing my three kids would be to me before they were born. God has a way of surprising us with something desperately need, but might not choose if it were up to us.

My three girls have taught me to laugh more, love more and enjoy the moment. But more than anything else they have taught me more about what it means to follow Christ. A Christ-centered life is one of service and sacrifice. Kids have needs and they have a way of teaching us to become less centered and more other centered. Children give us the chance to rub off some of those edges of self-absorption, concentration on me, my schedule, and what I want to do. Children offer us the opportunity to become something we would never become if we did not have them in our lives. I would be who I am if I didn’t have them in my life.

What have you been learning about a life of following Christ from the children in your life?

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3 responses

14 05 2008
Macair Gordon

My daughter has taught me to love unconditionaly. Even when she gets hurt, she forgives, and continues to love them just like Christ loves her. She doesn’t pull back from those people, she engages with them and tries to bring them some joy, even through a small gift such as a card. She finds happiness in even the smallest things, she is the child who can find the silver lining in a rainy day. To her, it’s a chance to catch up on a good book. She can laugh at the strangest things, and then before you know it I’m laughing and I have no idea why! She has taught me to enjoy life again and always put other people first. She really has shown me what a servants heart looks like. I am truly grateful to be her mother.

15 05 2008
Tim Kade

Macair, Your daughter is such a wonderful young lady. It’s amazing how our kids respond to the good and bad in life – we can learn so much when we slow down enough to notice.

15 05 2008
Larry

Six years ago, I found myself blaming others for my inability to enjoy practicing my faith. We attend a church where the pastor was progressive, in that he allowed contemporary music (not to the level of EPIC) to be part of the service. I enjoyed the service, even though I could recite the prayers in my sleep. I attended weekly without any issues. I was only a one hour per week practicing Christian.

Things changed in that church and the worship service transitioned to an ultra traditional format. It was dry and I began to loose interest in weekly attendance. Sandy and I search numerous churches to find the right environment, but we eventually stopped going to Sunday worship altogether. I was blaming the church for not creating the right spiritual environment for me.

Obviously, through the grace of God (and my son, Shaun), I am here at EPIC worshiping every week. I truly believe that God had a direction for me. He showed me that I had much to learn about my faith, and he created the environment for me to learn and hear the word of God. He allowed me to learn the technical side of Sunday worship during the past 5 years, something that I had no experience prior, and give it back to the church community. I am now active in what EPIC is doing and where it is going.

I have taken what was finger-pointing at the church and now taking on the responsibility for what I can do at church, for where I want my spiritual life to go and working to control my daily emotions, focusing on being a Christian in my daily walk. Proverbs 16:9 defines how I now plan my day: “A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps”.

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