When Jesus came teaching in Matt 10:7 that the Kingdom of God is at hand, I believe He was revealing that life’s greatest treasures are within our reach. It’s so easy to simply be consumed by life allowing the most important things to slip away. One of the most common phrases we parents say is, “They grow up so fast!” Making the most of every stage of life and family is very important and simply involves purposeful and deliberate appreciation and involvement.
She was 9 years old and could hardly concentrate at school that day. Tonight was her special date with her daddy. The clock seemed to be in slow motion that day but finally the concluding bell sounded. Rushing home to get just the right outfit. Her instructions to her daddy were very specific for that night, suit and tie! It was going to be a special evening out, just the two of them.
Finally the time arrived and it was 5:45. Her daddy appeared from his room in his nicest suit. As suddenly as he appeared he was gone slipping out through the garage. It would take fifteen minutes to make it around the corner to buy flowers and return. This time the car wasn’t pulled into the garage. Her daddy wanted to demonstrate the behavior of a true gentleman. The car is left waiting in the driveway as the doorbell rings. The door opened and the daughter’s smile was more than a facial expression. This smile came all the way from the heart.
Flowers, escort to the car, door opened for the lady, the music just right at her preference and the inquiry, “Are you hot, cold or just right” all communicated what a real man’s behavior should be. There will be boys who will try to enter her life in days ahead. The counterfeits will be easily identified because of the experience of what deeper more meaningful life is all about on her daddy daughter dates.
These dates aren’t trips to exotic places around the world. These are average places to sit, talk and laugh. After the evening ends it’s hardly even possible to describe the topics that created such laughter because it really wasn’t ever about the topics just as it wasn’t about the food.
One day I was busy working in my home office. Tracy wasn’t due home for another hour and I decided to create a memory with my girls. It was near the Christmas holiday so taking my camera in hand I coached our two young daughters through the Christmas story. Costumes were crude and the acting required bribing with cookies but we did it! The video was such a hit that year on Christmas day as we watched it with family and at our office parties; we decided to make it an annual tradition.
Baking cookies and delivering them to somebody as a family will enrich your home in amazing ways. Shopping for groceries for somebody in need becomes a tremendous lesson in giving and the blessing associated with it. Instead of letting time pass you by you do have the choice to create memories.
A Christ-centered, loving, serving and giving culture in your life, family and home will not happen just because you hope it happens. Hope is not a strategy. This takes work, planning, dedication and even accountable relationships with others who have the same goal in mind.
If we neglect that which is within our reach it’s only a matter of time before the most important things in life have slipped away. It’s less costly and more rewarding to invest in a marriage than to suffer divorce. It’s less costly and more rewarding to invest time with children than to suffer disconnection of angry teens who justify their repayment of the painful sting of neglect. What is within your reach that you need to assign a greater priority? It’s never too late to make an improvement and giving God something to work with might completely turn things around.
Moses stood having lost all hope of his dreams. God gets his attention and asks him this profoundly important question, “What’s in your hand?” The key to his future was found in his hand. What was in his hand didn’t look like the dream in his heart. The seed rarely resembles the result.
This is from chapter 3 of my book, Deeper More Meaningful Life. Click here to purchase your copy today.