Being a parent really scares me. I want to be so much better than I know I am. I listen to and watch the way I parent Blake and Anna Jo and I see so much of my dad coming out in me. I want to hang on to all of the good that he showed me in being a father and ditch all the bad. It is weird listening to yourself sound just like your parents.
What would I do for my kids? That is a stupid question, but one that Shar and I have discussed lately. Of course, I would do anything for my kids, but is the "anything" I would do really enough?
Shar and I have been shown one example of "anything for your kids" that both impresses us and confuses us. Here is the scenario.
A family; healthy, normal, very active in church, honestly good kids, solid parents, above average in all considerable aspects. Dad decides that the family needs to move from their church and community home of 15 years to another state and new environment. Bam, they pick up and move. All of details are not that important, but the dad and mom make the move based on faith and months of prayer and out of concern for their above average, very healthy, respectful, kids.
2 and a half years later the family moves back again to the original spot, different house, same church and schools but 2 years later. When the kids return to their familiar surroundings they notice their old friends have changed. What seemed so common and comfortable 2 years ago now was awkward and different. The kids had seen life outside of their comfort zone and now had a broader view of life. Which kids had changed?
The dad in all of this says he moved for his kids. He was worried about the people and things influencing them and wanted a change. He made a drastic move and pulled his family out of their comfort zone and forced them into a new setting.
The dad says it was a good move. The risk he took in moving his family paid off with the result of children with a broader view of life and a stronger confidence that they can live in many places, and a noticeable increase in their appreciation of family and their trust in God.
When I was in highschool I really thought that life only existed in Escondido California. Vacations took place in Dallas Texas, but from what I could see there was no reason to live anywhere else but Escondido. I went to college in Abilene and gained some perspective of life outside of California, but I never thought of living anywhere else. Home was home and that was were I would return to. When Shar and I married all of that changed. Life now was much bigger than it had been and I was much more open to living anywhere with Shar. I had grown up some, but that happens when you're away from home. But what about if you never leave home? Do you ever get the chance to grow up?
There are kids that I have coached here in Central Texas that graduate and get a job and never leave. They are the 2nd and 3rd generation living in the same town, and even though that has many benefits to it, how much are they expanding themselves by staying in the same place.
The dad I told you about said that he would do it again. He would move his family to protect them from the comfortable, easy life that they are used to. His concerns for his kids are genuine. But would I do the same thing? If Blake was involved in friendships and social groups that I felt were harmful, how drastic of a move would I make to protect him? How drastic of a move would I make to impress upon him how much I love him?
Two fears I have. One is not doing enough, not making a drastic move to protect my kids. The other is taking that chance and making a drastic move and it not working out.
What I need. Wisdom in raising my kids. Increased faith that God's plan will be visible to me.