Building Foundations

Nov 20, 2013 by



The other day, our son, Shay, was standing in the kitchen as I was heading out the door for work. Just as I was about to shut the door, he called out, “Have a great day!” and “Smile.”

Now this may not seem like a momentous occasion to you. People every day send you off with some good wish for your day. But it was the second sentence that got me.


You see, when we were raising our children, we always left them with a phrase of encouragement or instruction. Whether we were dropping them off at school, or choir class, or ball practice, we wanted to remind them that they were going to be interacting with people, and they needed to prepare themselves to do it well. Hence the “Smile.” Shay actually shortened it that day. The whole phrase is, “Smile, someone might need one.”

When we step out of our homes, we don’t know whom we may meet. Our day could be filled with interactions with others who are having amazing days and who live a dream life. But more often than not, the people we encounter are living through troubles, struggles, and doubts. And sometimes, they just need a smile and a kind word to lift their spirits for a moment.

What was so wonderful was Shay was reminding me like I used to remind him. The foundation we had worked on for so many years was standing

We, as parents, have a responsibility to train our children in so many areas – physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. They have to know how to perform tasks from tying their shoes all the way to filling out a job application. We introduce them to God and help them see the world through His eyes. They need to learn how to be comfortable in their own skin and how to relate to other people around them. And the list goes on and on and on and on….

The thing is, those things that we are taking so much time teaching them is establishing a foundation that will carry them through the rest of their lives. You may not see the results right now. But if you remain consistent and steadfast, you will see the kind, productive, selfless adults that they can become. Yes, we all can choose how we live our lives, and not all our children will choose to follow the path we have paved. Unfortunately, that is a sad reality.

But, I am accountable for what I have done as a parent, and I will train my child to the best of my abilities. I want to at least give them a foundation to stand on. What they build on it is still up to them.

What foundation are you building for your children?


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