Like too many men, my dad and I are far more comfortable talking about things we’ve done that day, projects around the house and cars. Maybe it’s my fault, maybe it’s his fault, most likely it’s both of our faults. But it’s just easier to talk about nothing than it is to talk about, well, something.
That’s why it’s so special when we actually discuss something important. At the end of last week, I told my dad about something I’d been struggling with, and we talked about it a little.
The next day, he sent me 10 long text messages over five hours in an effort to help me work through my ordeal. Some of the messages were about similar situations he’d encountered. Other texts were things he’d read on the Internet since we talked. My dad had contemplated how he could best assist me and was drawing on everything at his disposal to help his son.
An image is making the rounds on social media of a parent taking pieces of themselves and using them to complete their child. Day after day, the image suggests, parents impart life lessons, energy, love and guidance to their children. As they do, what parents believe is most important is passed to the next generation. That’s what my dad was trying to impart on me at the end of last week.
That's also what I see parents at Buckner Family Pathways attempting to do each time I visit one of the ministry’s locations across Texas. They pass down knowledge when they talk to their children. They share lessons when they teach their children. Most importantly, they shape their children when they live out what’s most important to them.
What pieces of wisdom would you like to pass on to your children? How are you making sure that happens?
Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. – Deuteronomy 11:18-19