Thursday, September 22, 2011

100 Things I Want My Children to Know--Part 1

In the hustle and bustle of family life, it's easy to lose sight of what's really important. I guess it's that old tyranny of the urgent problem. Someone does have to feed the children, after all, and it's nice if their clothing is relatively clean and their homework is done each night.

But on some level I want to be intentional about what I'd really like to pass on to my children. I want to have loosely organized goals that I'm shooting for--things I want my children to experience and things I want to help them learn through those experiences during the short years they live under my roof.

So I'm going to put pen to paper (so to speak) and occasionally write the things I want my children to know before they leave home. Some of them will be profound, top-10 values things, and some of them will just be preferences of mine that I want them to understand even if they don't share the same preferences.

I find that thinking about what I really care about helps me to live in the moment, to be aware of what matters. As I started writing this list of 100 things, I noticed that none of these things have to do with being the best or the brightest--which means that the things I do with my children and the things we talk about shouldn't have anything to do with being the best or the brightest either.

***These are in no particular order. Someday maybe I'll organize them into categories, but for now I'm just going to list what comes to mind.***

1) Mom and Dad love you. We will always love you, no matter what you do or how you may hurt us or how we may hurt you along the way. Even if we don't always know how to show it, we love you.

2) God loves you much more than we do. He loved you all the way to earth and all the way to the cross and all the way back to heaven. He will always love you, no matter what you do. You can never, ever escape his love or stray too far to find him. And he will forgive you. Always. No matter what.

3) What it feels like to dance in the rain.

4) The beauty of a sunset enjoyed with someone you love.

5) The satisfaction of really struggling with something, and then finally getting it.

6) How important it is to follow through on commitments. Let your yes be yes and your no be no. If you say you're going to meet up with someone, show up. If you say you're going to help with something, do it. If you say you are someone's friend, be loyal to them even if the crowd tells you it's not cool. This is what integrity is. And it's worth it to be someone that other people can trust.

7) You can't take it with you. Stuff is just stuff. It will wear out or break, and all that will remain is God himself, his Word, and people (because souls are eternal). Spend your time and money on things that will last.

8) Because we are made in the image of a creative God, we are all creative and have something worth expressing. Find ways to express your creativity.

9) Your friends will rub off on you. Choose friends that you want to be like and you'll always be growing into the person you want to become.

10) God made this world beautiful and he made it for us to enjoy. Get out and marvel at it. It's good for your soul.

Your turn--what are some of your 100 things?


  1. These are wonderful, Nancy. I bet that as you're listing you'll come up with more than 100.

  2. You write beautifully. I like this. Thanks for sharing.