Monday, August 23, 2010

Fill ‘Em Up

These boys work just as hard in school as they do on the soccer field.  Each one is a conscientious student, who goes to his classes, turns in his assignments, and tries to make good choices.  soccer practice

That’s not always easy when the normal public school behavior includes apathy and disrespect. 

They aren’t perfect.   However, their desire to do well is a huge blessing to me.

I’m proud of them, knowing that, at this age, there is a constant struggle going on in the heart.  It’s a struggle between doing the minimum, and excelling.  Between following the crowd and standing alone.  Between staying silent, and speaking truth.

For young teens, the battle is fought every moment of every day.  And it’s won or lost in the heart.   

My son, if your heart is wise,

My heart will rejoice—indeed,

I myself;

Yes, my inmost being will rejoice

When your lips speak right things.

Proverbs 23:19

Do you hear the heart of God in this passage?  It’s such a wonderful reminder of what is important.  It isn’t school grades, or soccer goals, or even a hair cut that reveals they have eyes and ears.  

It’s their hearts.

And the words that pour out from them.

For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.  A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things…

Matthew 12:34b and 35a

Yet, If the hearts of my sons are so important, what have I done to encourage them today?   How have I helped to fill them up with wisdom and goodness

Somehow, I think they need more than the nagging that comes standard issue.

With God’s help, I want to find more ways to offer them…

  • Unconditional love and support. 
  • Grace when they fall, and a helping hand back up. 
  • A listening (and loving) ear when they find the courage to talk about their struggles.
  • And insights on how God’s wisdom is relevant.

For a heart to pour out goodness, it must constantly be topped off.

I know we’re all busy.  But our schedules shouldn’t keep us from adding goodness to the hearts of our children.  I’m committing to doing better on this.  Whether it’s a brief hug on the way out the door, or a smile and listening ear over an after school snack.

I’ve missed too many opportunities already to fill them up with goodness.  They shouldn’t have to run on the fumes of yesterday’s encouragement.

I have some of the most wonderful reader-moms out there, and I would love for you to share your wisdom and encouragement on this front.  I’m sure I’m not the only one who struggles. 

Practically speaking, how do you help to fill your children’s heart with goodness?

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