Posts Tagged ‘Dreams’


Bounce BackBlogBack in the 1900’s (well, that’s technically correct, but it makes me sound old)…In the late 90’s (ok, not much better. I was an adult when many of you reading this were not even alive, so I still feel seasoned)…Let’s just say “back in the day”, yeah, let’s go with that…Back in the day, I rode my bike without knee pads or a helmet.  However, nowadays, it seems that they issue safety equipment with every bike purchase. I used to drink water from the garden hose, but today, water must be bottled, chilled, and vapor-distilled with electrolytes.  I left the house in the morning and did not return until the street lights came on.  There were no apps or smartphones with GPS to track my every move and guess what, I turned out just fine.

Before you pounce, I agree, times are different now than they were “back in the day.”  Perhaps our awareness is greater due to technology and the internet but just go with me for a second. Think about it.  What life-skills did you develop when you fell off your bike and licked your wounds and kept playing? Or what about when you had to think critically to solve problems or resolve conflicts amongst friends because adults weren’t around to intervene? When we loss a game we had to deal with the emotion of not being good enough, this time.  Some took their ball and went home, but we know how life turned out for them if they continued on that path.  We did not receive feel-good trophies just for participating.  There was a level of resilience that was unintentionally and/or indirectly learned that may be absent from many of our kids today.

As parents, we are so close that we are able to grab our kids by the hand before they fall; anticipate their problems, and mitigate the risk before they are encountered. We mediate their conflicts and even provide solutions before providing them with the opportunity to think through their options. We lessen their loads so that they do not have to work as hard, but all at what cost?

Building Bounce-Back Power!

In our effort to provide our children with the life that we did not have, perhaps we are eliminating the character-building experiences that made us who we are. I believe that the majority of parents goal is for their children to be positive, productive citizens in society. Society includes others. Although we may be teaching them to be productive, but are we equally considering their ability to relate with and to others?  We doing our kids a disservice when we remove the resistance that builds the core of their internal resolve and strength — Bounce Back Power!

Fertilizer has a purpose.  It smells awful, but it also creates a fertile environment that promotes growth.  The same goes for our kids.  What stinks in their life could be the very thing that helps them grow. Resilience is one of the main characteristics that, I believe, is essential during a child’s adolescent years.  When a parent is not intentional about developing coping skills in their child(ren), it can significantly increase their stress levels as adults and impact their ability to socialize with others.  Without an ability to cope with life circumstances, adults become paralyzed and seek alternative means, outside of themselves, to produce happiness and peace.

We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they are good for us — they help us learn to be patient. And patience develops strength of character in us and helps us trust in God more each time we use it until finally our hope and faith are strong and steady. Then, when that happens, we are able to hold our heads high no matter what happens and know that all is well, for we know how dearly God loves us, and we feel this warm love everywhere within us because God has given us the Holy Spirit to fill out hearts with his love.”  – Romans 5:3-5 LAB

I do not believe it is a mistake that the above passage mentioned these three characteristics that develop as we go through problems and trials.  The legendary coach, Vince Lombardi once said, “It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get back up.” At some point in life, he knew we all would get knocked down, but are we intentionally teaching our kids how to get back up?

Think about it…where would you be if you did not have these three characteristics to depend on as an adult?  How would you respond in the midst of your storm? (Pause to allow time for reflection). So now you understand why it is equally important for you to be intentional about allowing your kids to face some level of problems and trials so that they develop an ability to cope as children.

Just in case you could not imagine what your life would be like without these characteristics, consider this.

Patience

According to Dictionary.com, Patience is your capacity to accept and/or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting upset or angry.  Perhaps you could not imagine life with patience, because you have none (IJS). Stress is real and it is a killer.  You can’t teach what you don’t know. Modeling the behavior is the best way to teach your child.  Use your life circumstances to point out when you had to be patient and how it benefited you. Continue to model it until they catch it.

Refer to Galatians 6:9 ESV – Let us not grow weary in doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we don’t give up.

Character

Life is about choices.  The choices we make will be based on who we are as a person. Without patience, our character is the only thing that will keep us out of trouble. Problems are only compounded when our character causes us to make bad decisions in the midst of a trial.  Our character is based on how we think, who we are, and the moral compass that guides our actions. Your abilities may get you in the room, but your character is what will allow you to maintain what you obtained. What’s influencing the way you think?  How you think will determine who you become, which impacts what you do.

Refer to Proverbs 23:7a NKJV – “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.”

Trust in God

“Do you!” is a popular catch-phrase that, in my opinion, is misguided, to say the least.  It proposes that we know what to do and have complete control over the future. But, I contend, as parents, we should stop telling our kids “you can be whatever you want to be if you put your mind to it.”  I believe this sets them up for failure and disappointment. The reality is they were born with a purpose.  Although they could be good at many things, there is something that will bring them great joy and fulfillment. As our kids “Original Mentors” (their parents), it is our responsibility to guide them on their journey toward discovering why God placed them on this earth.  Once they are on the path, we should help cultivate their faith in a way that causes them to depend less on us and trust more in the one who knows the plans that He has for them. God will reveal who they are and His intentions for how He will use them to impact the world. This is a matter of perspective.  You are not teaching them to think small or limit their capacity. You are actually expanding their capacity by getting them to depend on the one who is able to do more than we can ask or think — God!

Refer to Proverbs 3:5-6 NLTTrust in the Lord with all of your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. 

Parents…to help your kid(s) fully realize who God has created them to be, you must be who He designed you to become. – TheOriginalMentor.com

Where Do You Go From Here?

Perhaps you read this blog and realized that you need to take action steps to help your child(ren) develop patience, character, and trust in God.  I suggest you read Super Pencil as a family.

Super Pencil & Revenge of Talking TelevisionsSuper Pencil is a realistic fiction, coming of age story about a boy growing up in the suburbs who has to be patient, build character, and trust God. when he is forced to navigate finding friends, fitting in, feeling lonely, and react to being bullied.

From fourth grade boys to middle school girls, or a parent wanting to spend quality time with their child (ren), Super Pencil is a non-stop adventure that will make you laugh, think, cry, and then cheer for the good guy. 

Go to SuperPencilSaga.com/shop to order your copy today.

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Its Your Story Too My wife has always inspired me to be better.  She has an internal drive that causes her to get bored very quickly if she is not being challenged. Before we got married, she talked about how Jesus had impacted her life.  I had heard of Him and even heard others talk about Him when, but in hindsight, I had never met Him for myself.  I decided to attend the church that she frequented and it changed my eternity. Early on in our marriage, she decided to pursue a Master’s degree.  That meant that I would not have home cooked meals on nights that she had class, but that was a sacrifice required for her to accomplish her goal.  As I sat by and watched her study, I realized the importance of growing together, so I decided to pursue a Master’s degree as well. (Fast forward about 8 or 9 years)

About 2 years ago, we were talking about our 2014 Family Vision Plan.  We were discussing what made us happy.  After I shared my list, I realized how sad it made her.  She had been in a little slump that was uncommon for her.  During our conversation, she made a statement that kinda rocked me at my core.  I paraphrase, “I feel like there is more! I do not even have a hobby right now! Event Planning is what I love to do and where I find my joy.”  I decided that I would do all that I could to help her get her groove back!  We signed her up for classes, set aside money in the budget to purchase event decor items for her to practice, and we took the proper steps to relaunch her event business.

Fellas…the theme above is clear.  I made a decision to change, to improve, to support her.  It is difficult, if not impossible, to make a decision to support your wife while thinking about the negative impact it will have on you.  Each decision above meant that I was going to have to sacrifice my current way of being, thought process, habits, hobbies, comfort, and time to ensure that she is properly supported.

“Happy wife happy life.” is so cliche, but so true when you dig deeper.  It is not just about making her happy, but positioning her to be the best she can be; which will benefit you as well. Ladies…balance is still important.  In the course of becoming, you can not completely neglect your role.  Be sure to support and continue to encourage him in the process.  If you both are meeting the needs of each other, no one will feel neglected. The two of you should have fun building together.

An “EMPIRE” is defined as “a very large business or group of businesses under the control of one person or company. Think of your family as the owners of an empire that you all are building together.  It is not hers and yours, but ours!  Her successes are your successes. Success does not mean who makes the most money.  Money may be a need, but should not be the driving force.  When you are seeking to discover your true passions, using your God-given gifts, with proper motives, everything will fall into place (Proverbs 18:16 & Matthew 6:33).

Below are some tips I have used to support my wife.  I hope they help:

1.  Don’t Be a Dream Killer

  • You may be very successful in your field and matriculated at the finest institutions, but there is more than one road to success.  Just because your road may seem shorter, does not mean that there are not benefits to traveling a route that may take a little longer or even cost a little more.  Be a mentor, but allow for mistakes without, ” I told you so.(Proverbs 15:1)

2. They Have Dreams Too

  • Dismissing her wants, dreams, and desires is a sure way for you all to grow apart.  Security may come because you are a provider, but that cannot replace the feeling of fulfilling a purpose.  Imagine how they may feel about you helping everyone else become prosperous, but you are not willing to take the time to help them.  Their success is yours too.  You are building an “empire”! (1Timothy 5:8)

3. Give a Little, Take a Little #Compromise

  • I know you travel and have important meetings so that you can continue to provide.  However, just like you put your family on hold for work, there has to be a consistent time where your colleagues are put on hold for family.  Balance is important.  What is MOST important? It has to be more than just words.  With proper planning, anything is possible. (Philippians 2:3)

4. Don’t Sabotage Their Success

  • Remember…their success is your success.  If you have the type of marriage that lifelike roommates and separate everything, fix that first.  When you married you became ONE!  A house divided against itself cannot stand.  When one is jealous of the success of the other, it is a sure sign that you are not operating as one.  If you feel like they are doing more, then DECIDE to do more to support them so that it becomes “ours”.
  • WARNING:  Do not decide to start your own business just because they did.  It cost time, money, and effort to run one business.  Timing is important.  This is still a form of sabotage, disguised as ambition.  Check your motives or you will destroy your own Empire. (Matthew 6:1-18)

5. Be Patient

  • Rome was not built in a day, neither will your empire.  Despise not humble beginnings (Job 8:7).  Building a strong foundation will ensure that what you build will be around for your generations.  After all, the goal is not only to be rich but to build wealth.  Wealth encompasses far more than the amount of money you have.  You will face trials and setbacks, but there is no failure in a lesson learned.  In the end, you will be mature, complete and lacking nothing (James 1:2-8)