Lots of people have been encouraging me and my family as we continue to pray through this faith-stretching season. Recently someone shared this with us and it has become my prayer:
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I’m a single parent – for about eight days anyway. My wife is out of the country and I have no way to even communicate with her, so at least for now – it feels like I’m on my own.
But that’s where the comparison stops really. I don’t want to compare my week solo with what thousands of moms and dads do every single day – parent on their own. It’s only day four and I’m losing the battle. So far I’ve made my kids cry with a frustrated moment of voice raising, I’ve sat them in front of TV / iPad / video games way more than I’d like to admit, and I put the car in drive with the door open and had my youngest fall out. (He’s fine by the way.)
Parenting is one of the toughest jobs in the world. And that’s just the part where we try and keep them alive and dressed and half way clean. But for many single parents, that’s the easy part. There’s also working and trying to earn enough on one lousy salary to keep a roof over their heads and food in the fridge. Add to that the important task of teaching kids about life, how to be a good man or woman, helping them succeed in school and trying to keep up with what their friends are doing. Sometimes those same parents are trying to undo what their kids are learning from a less responsible parent.
Single mom and single dad – you are the most amazing people on the planet. What you are doing is so hard. But please don’t quit. Don’t give up. We see you. All your hard work, all your sacrifice, all your frustration. We see it. You are doing an amazing job. You really are.
In case you haven’t seen it, here’s the 2014 NBA MVP Kevin Durant talking about the influence of his single mom on his life. (Jump ahead to about 2:54 if you’ve only got a couple of minutes.)
It’s 12:32am. My alarm will go off in less than four and a half hours. And I can’t sleep.
Tonight my mind is racing. It doesn’t help that I took a two hour nap pretty late in the day today. But mainly it’s my thoughts running a hundred miles an hour.
As a kid I remember being so excited some nights that I couldn’t sleep. The night before Christmas. The night before camp, or before a big game. You know what kids don’t do? They don’t stay up late replaying the tapes of all the conversations they had that day, or reliving the past and wishing they could change something. I love that about them. They are almost always forward focused – dreaming, excited about what the next day will bring.
Somewhere along the line our memories become stronger than our dreams. We lose that child-like excitement for life and for what could be. I hope your dreams are stronger than your memories. I hope the future pulls harder than the past for you.
Tonight, it’s my dreams keeping me up and not my memories. And that feels pretty good.
What keeps you up at night?