Monday, February 16, 2009
A New Perspective
For 15 years Matt and I have put hundreds and probably 1,000 of youth kids in vans and buses and drove them all over the country...and out of the country too! When we first started in Carterville we were only a few years older than the Seniors in High School and I can't believe they let us take those kids all over!! WOW!! It has been an awesome responsibility taking care of them and making sure they were safe. Now that I have one that I am putting in a van and letting others drive around...it brings a whole different perspective to the situation. I knew this day would come and many of my mentors in the ministry did their best to prepare me for it, but it is still just is odd to me sometimes....watching her...seeing her grow up and leave without me. It was always hard on me to not go on the trips with Matt, there were very few that I wasn't on thru out our time in the youth. I remember packing up 3 babies and draggin them all over just to be there for Matt and the youth. My kids loved hanging out with the older ones and I loved the example they were setting for my kids. I love that my kids know the importance of being involved at church...not because their dad is a minister, but because they want to be a part of His kingdom. I know so many minister families that their kids grow up being made to go to church and not getting the real reason as to why they are there. Matt and I have always tried really hard to not make our kids feel like they have to act a certain way or be a certain person because of Matt's job, but because as a Christ follower...it is what they should desire. I watch Lauren helping Liberty with her kids and I just love that...I remember several youth girls who were so precious to me because they would help me with the kids so I could go on trips. Now most of them have babies of their own!! Liberty has been such a blessing to me...Lauren just loves her and thinks she is so fun. That means the world to me that Lauren has connected with her as the youth minister's wife...the impact she will have on so many girls will change the world for Christ..and she may never know for awhile how big. As we have closed that chapter in our lives...so may girls have blessed me with encouraging words as to how being able to come to our house and spend time with us made such an impact on them. Being a minister's wife becomes your identity in some ways and when that role changes you feel lost for awhile. I have stepped into a new season in my life...being the parent of one of those youth kids...and I feel so blessed to have a strong youth program...with Liberty and Lydia (lauren's small group leader) there to help mentor Lauren and I know they will reinforce Godly wisdom in her life and be there for her when she needs a Godly woman to talk too. As a parent...do everything you can to get your kids involved in the youth...don't put sports or anything in front of it...develop strong relationships with other youth kids and encourage them to go on the trips. Those trips are where the true connection happens. So I am thankful....for many things in my life...and seeing my daughter serve in the youth...that is one of the highlights. I don't try to pretend we are the perfect parents and our kids always act right and say the right things...they will mess up...we will mess up as parents...but I just have to ask God every day to guide me and give me wisdom.