Let Them Become

Dec 11, 2012 by

I’m sitting in a darkened theater watching our oldest daughter, Lauren, in rehearsal for a Christmas production. She has always had an interest in dance and drama and was thrilled when she was made one of the principal dancers in this show. It is so much fun to watch my child doing something she absolutely loves doing and, as a side note, is good at.

As our children are growing up, many parents want to expose them to various creative and physical outlets – dance, singing, soccer, baseball, band, debate, softball, basketball, gymnastics, robotics, scouts, drama…. I don’t have enough word capacity in this blog to list everything our kids can become involved in. Such opportunities are wonderful and great for the children. They build creativity, team spirit, confidence, self-esteem. But mostly, it helps them to discover who they are and what they are passionate about.

Unfortunately, we as parents can mess up this process in various ways:

  • We direct our children to activities that only we enjoy or understand.
  • We encourage activities that we did as kids to relive our youth vicariously through our children.
  • We can’t find a balance between encouragement and overbearing pushing.
  • We force our children into activities that they don’t enjoy at all.
  • We allow academics to dominate our children’s lives without letting them explore their interests.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” We, as parents, need to get out of the way of our children becoming who God designed them to be. And then, we become their most ardent cheerleaders.

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
― Oscar Wilde

How are you encouraging your children to be exactly who they are?


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