The Googegs - Strangers in the World

The Googegs - Strangers in the World

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What Do You Want to Be When You Grow Up

This is a post that I originally wrote to be posted on -- on their Front Porch. Unfortunately they are discontinuing their blog and so I will post it here for your perusal.

It is always great fun to see what young children are going to say when you ask them, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I have gotten the funniest answers from my children like one young guy who thought he might like to be a police dog, or a child of a friend who decided after a funeral that he would like to be a grave digger. However, we usually keep asking the question into the teen years so that we can help our children get focused, streamline their studies and plan for college. After reading our unit study on the life of William Borden, I realized that we have been focused on getting the wrong answer.

According to our study book, William Borden was asked the infamous question by his mother when he was six years old. His response was, “I want to be an honest man when I grow up, and true and loving and kind and faithful.” (Wisdom Booklet 40 Published 2006 Advanced Training International). His answer was about the kind of man he wanted to be and not about his vocation. How often have we prompted our children to tell us what they want to do instead of what they want to be?

I know for myself that I can get sidetracked by the planning needed for after graduation. Where do you want to college? We have to know whether they offer your major. What is your major? What do you want to do? Even those waters are pretty murky. I have a child that expressed an interest in nursing. Well, OR nurse? ER nurse? OB nurse? Even before that they are levels of nursing with different degrees. Nursing schools don’t always offer all of them. What do you want to do? Trying to be leading in the right direction I did begin to ask, “How will you serve Christ with this?” I didn’t even think enough at the time to ask “Do you feel led of the Lord?”

It is more than serving Christ with what we do; it is what we are going to be. This is character training. Don’t I want my young men to be men of God? That requires that they learn to be obedient (first time), honest, compassionate and willing to stand for their Savior at all costs. It also means to stand up for others when they are given the opportunity. For my girls, don’t I want them to be young ladies? The list would be pretty much the same: obedience, honesty, compassionate and willing to stand firm in their faith. I want them to learn to walk out of step with the world and in step with Christ.

Most of us start this pretty young, by teaching our little guys to be obey Mom and Dad and tell the truth. Then, we keep saying, “when you grow up…” 1 Timothy 4:12 says, “Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.” That means right now – no matter the age “be thou an example”. I have started calling my boys “my mighty men” and my girls “young ladies of virtue”. I want them to know that is what they are right now. To be honest, it is a messy business. They don’t always get it right. They aren’t always obedient, or truth-tellers or compassionate with each other. When I look at myself, I see that I have some years on them, and for me it is still a messy business. As we are told in Philippians 2:12, “…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” So, we are all working it out – no matter the age.

As I approach the launching of my teenagers, I am changing my emphasis from majors and vocations to the kind of man or woman that Christ is asking them to become. I am urging them to keep “working out their salvation” and let the Lord lead their steps. I counsel them to be faithful and diligent to “…Seek ye first the Kingdom of God…” (Matthew 6:33). Finally, I have stopped asking “What do you want to be when you grow up?”, and I have started asking: “What is the Lord calling you to do for Him?”

Saturday, October 22, 2011

You are Gifted

I have spent most of my life saying that I am not gifted or talented. I don't have anything to offer. I was so excited to see that my kids -- all of them have gifts that I have long thought were so cool. They are very musical, artistic, well-spoken kids (I may be a little biased!)

Here's an example:

Riane took some old postcards from Yap and an old picture I was given in Argentina and came up with a nice display.

. . .old dried stuff from the creek for her windowsill.

And it is not just Riane ... they all have interesting things.

Then I listened to a sermon by John Piper: "We Were Eager to Share With You Our Own Souls" . He was telling us that we have the gift of the Holy Spirit -- we always have The Gift to share. We ought to be seeking ways to give instead of saying "I'm not gifted." Even saying we have much to learn and heading off to Bible Studies -- are we giving or just receiving?

Please go and listen to this message for yourself. I have to tell you that I turned it on while I was mopping the kitchen floor. Not only was I was mopping, I was constantly redirecting "Go around, I am cleaning the floor." "It will be dry in a minute, just wait." "What do you need, I am mopping the floor." So, I may have missed essential parts of the message or even misrepresented.

I will say this, since I have the Holy Spirit, I am guessing that is the message he had for me that day.

You are gifted, now go share it.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Then and Now

This weekend the kids were messing around with an old video camera and found a memory card. We looked at the pictures on that and couldn't believe it -- they were taken about 9 years ago. I vaguely remember Jerome using the video camera to take some still shots on this new "memory card thing" and I couldn't figure out what we would ever do with them. At the time we had no way to do anything with it. What a blessing it was this week.

Adela then:

Adela Now:

Ricky Then:

Ricky Now:

Braydon Then:

Braydon Now:

Riane  Then:

Riane Now:



The WHOLE tribe then:

The WHOLE tribe now:

Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord and the fruit of the womb is his reward. Psalm 127:3

Saturday, October 1, 2011

From One Big Family to Another

Encouragement. We all need it. It can be hard to find sometimes especially if you don't fit the mold of this world. Today we were encouraged.

My friend, who has been my friend for a good 8 years brought her family to our house to welcome our new children. They sang a beautiful hymn to us and shared some favorite scripture verses and then they prayed over us.

Sounds so simple, but this was a big and wonderful surprise for us. First of all, my friend has 10 children. Many are married and have children of their own. All but two of the children were able to come today. We have stood with each other during weddings, emergency room visits, high school graduations. We even held hands over a crash site that we are thankful her daughter and son-in-law survived. We have been to zoos, museums and even a news station on homeschool field trips. We both walked through painful decisions to change churches with our families. We have worshipped together and knelt at the altar in prayer. We have weeped, and laughed and prayed some more.

She is rocking grandchildren, I am still having children.

From one big family to another ...

I love you my friend!