Have you ever felt like parenting is less about developing your child and more about surviving? We live in a society that is fast-paced and sometimes it can be hard to keep up as a parent. I know I have been there before...You feel like you are just trying to last long enough to get your kids in bed so you can fall like Goliath onto the couch. But we all know that our children and grandchildren are our developmental responsibility. So how do we balance these feelings that seem to be at odds with one another?
I believe God created both Moments & Milestones that occur in our lives. Moments are the day-to-day and week-to-week things that move us through life. These things are typically unplanned and you tend to find yourself in a moment before you realize it. Milestones are the things our life is moving towards. These are usually accomplishments, changes that occur, or highlights in a person’s life.
As parents, we must learn to capitalize on the moments of our lives and prepare for the milestones we want to accomplish.
Here are a few things to help you do just that…
1. Change your mindset. One of the biggest fears of parents is that they will miss the wrong moments of their child’s life. We can get overwhelmed with all the things society throws at our family and all the stuff that fills our schedule and before we know it, we cannot tell what is most important. This is when the enemy will try to manipulate your mindset so you think you are missing key moments in your child’s life. But with the help of the Lord, we can change our mindset to an “I have this moment” style of thinking. We don’t have to be trapped by the enemy. Rather than living in the fear of what you might miss, you begin to maximize what you know you have. Moments are defined when you are focused and intentional and by changing your mindset, you can learn to capitalize on little things that happen in and to our family.
2. Create your milestones. You create milestones based on what you celebrate and invest in. In our society today, there are many things that get celebrated. We tend to setup milestones for goals scored in a game, recitals or performances, and for achieving honors and good results in school. None of these things are bad things. In fact, I had all of these kinds of milestones when I was growing up. But the truth is these things can fill our time and schedule to the point that we forget about another type of milestone. Spiritual milestones are often neglected not because we don’t believe in them, but because we aren’t sure how to celebrate and invest in them. Our spiritual well being, and the well being of our children, needs to be a tangible thing. We need to train our children that it’s okay to get excited about a bible verse memorized or a prayer that was answered just like you get excited about a goal scored or an A on a test. When we learn something new from the Bible, we should create a milestone around it. Milestones are things that our children will remember for years to come and we have the ability to help determine what they will be remembering.
What if all of our moments and milestones were related back to God?
Sometimes it is easy to think following Jesus means you have to be overly spiritual to be a good Christian. But does that mean our kids shouldn’t play in the band, sports, or excel in school? Should we just raise them to be little church rats that can quote books of the Bible? And what if that isn’t what your kid does…are you a bad parent then?
God wants to be in every part of our life. He has placed us in this world and given us gifts and abilities to do things and do them well. So this idea of moments and milestones is really all about helping you and I to find God in everything we do. To train up a child in the way they should go really means we are training them to see God in everything and celebrate everything with Him. Our kids need to know that mom and dad aren’t their biggest fans…God is their biggest fan.
By changing your mindset in the moments, you will create spiritual milestones for your family that will transfer from generation to generation. And what parent doesn’t want their children and their children’s children to be great in the eyes of the Lord.
1. Ask yourself what moments you can capitalize on today.
2. Start building a plan for the spiritual milestones in your family. (Remember, what you plan for, you make time for.)