A year or so ago, while driving back from my hometown, I got to thinking about a parent’s belief in his/her kids. It forced me to call into question the extent to which I think my kids believe I believe in them. I think they know I do, but do I hold them back in certain ways? Have I left them reason to doubt? Have I given them the tools they need to succeed?
These are tough questions that deserve an answer.
So while waiting for a train to pass, I tweeted, “A child needs to be 100% sold out on the belief that his/her parents believe in them… #ThoughtsWhileAwaitingATraintoPass” It was obviously late one night. It’s not grammatically correct, but I think you get my point.
Because kids don’t get a say in being born. They are here because of their parents. And that means something. Heck, it means everything. We brought them into the world without their consent. So how can I be responsible for their existences and yet irresponsible when it comes to setting them up for life? How can I want what’s best for them but not give them the best I have to offer?
What’s even more chilling is the fact that I’ve let this fester for this long, all the while uncertain about how my kids might feel about me and whether or not they are “sold out” sure I believe in them. What am I doing to instill in them this conviction? Sure, I go to their sporting events, cheer them on and such forth, but I mean, really, what am I doing to make them certain beyond any doubt?
As I look around, I see hopelessness and despair in a lot of kids. They wander the streets alone or in groups, faces often buried in a cell phone they aren’t paying for. They are bored out of their minds. There’s nothing else to do. No work. No purpose. No guidance. So they wander.
We bring them into the world and then want teachers, coaches, youth ministers and whomever else to raise them up. Schools and churches have seemingly become day care centers for kids. You find the best ones, generally the ones that offer the most, drop them off, role the dice, and hope to get lucky.
Something has to change. Kids have to know we believe in them because we didn’t give them a choice for entering the world they are in.