Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Parent Panel, the Sequel

So, last year, I was invited to come back to our "home" church and be a part of a parent panel...where people asked us questions on parenting and we gave all the wrong answers tried to give wise and godly advice.

I think I did okay talking about parenting Joshua, because I've talked about him and our experiences with him quite a bit...that's my comfort zone. But I didn't say anything about how Jim and I tried to intentionally parent our boys...Holly, too, but mainly our boys...because that's what the girl asked me to talk about. I was a wreck after I got home, because I felt like nothing coherent or usable came out of my mouth during that time...which, really, that is one thing that kind of spurred on my blog writing. I got home and was so convicted about it, that I wrote down the stuff that I WISH I would've said...and then I just kept on writing!

So, depending on how you look at it, maybe that was the good that came out of that day.

Anyway, in some sort of weak moment, the Children's Director asked me to come back again this year...and to bring Jim with me.

I know.

And the whole way over there...1 hour and 15 minutes away...he kept saying, "why do I have to come? You basically have done it all, anyway...or most of it."

(And this is where Moms everywhere stood on the roof-tops and cheered, because stay-at-home moms, part-time working moms, full-time working moms...we basically do most of the daily child-rearing I right? I think it's the bent of our hearts)

Truthfully, I was thinking the same thing...AND IT WASN'T THE FIRST TIME I'd thought it, either. It was just nice to hear it from him.

But there were 4 couples on the panel this year, and the questions were written anonymously and put into a box in the Children's area at the church.

Jim said that we...he and I...were probably the "what not to do" part of the program.

Ever the ray of sunshine.

But the questions we got...OH MY GOODNESS! There are some hurting families out there. Some of the questions we had NO BUSINESS even attempting to answer. But there was a lot of laughter...and even a lot of relief, as parents realized they weren't alone...that they were doing their best. And then there was one this one girl at the back of the room who sobbed as my friend, Ruth, and I spoke about parenting our children with special needs. What a tender heart! She about made ME cry.

After it was over, we got to see a LOT of our old friends. That part was AWESOME! They were so welcoming and familiar and loving. During some of the hardest and most difficult times in our lives, this particular church family was there...loving us and supporting us. And in some of the happiest and most joyful times in our lives, again, this church family was there...loving and supporting us. No matter where we go or whoever comes into our lives...that time stands as one of the most precious times of our lives. We will never forget God's faithfulness or how He used His people to invest in and minister to our family.

"These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up..." Deuteronomy 6:6-7

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