My kids don’t read my blog and right now they have no interest in ever reading it LOL. When my daughter sees my typing she sighs “are you blogging again mom?” LOL. It’s pretty funny. But I bet that one day they will read this blog – probably when I am dead or a great grandmother – but hey, better late than never.
The Hubster and I recently started working on our wills (aka Last Will and Testament). I’ve got the basics outlined as far as who is to get what property, but found that there was SO MUCH that I wanted to say to them that I have not said – advice, reminders, and discussions that we have not yet had. So, I decided to blog some of them so that they can read them later once I’m gone. That may sound strange but at the same time I think it’s kind of neat. It will probably take me some time to outline them all, but you’ve got to start somewhere.
So, to my children….
First and most importantly, I love you. Big time love you. Life can be hard. Family can be difficult. Relationships can be challenging. But that will not change the fact that I love you more than any other humans on the earth. I hope and pray that you are crazy blessed. That God gives you the desires of your heart. That you each marry someone who loves you more than anyone else ever could, that you find a career that you enjoy and are passionate about (otherwise work weeks will drag by forever and you’ll spend your entire adult life working and paying bills), and that you put relationships first. It’s the people in your life that mean the most. They will be what you miss later.
Secondly, take risks. If I were diagnosed with terminal cancer tomorrow, what would my regrets in life be? More than anything it would be the chances that I didn’t take and the experiences that we didn’t have as a family. Such as, I regret that we didn’t take enough family vacations together. When I met John, we started taking mini vacations and I oh so wish that I had made that a priority while you were growing up. I wish we had all gone to Florida together one summer, that we had gone on a camping trip in a cabin, and that we had gone on a ski trip together. I would love to see those scrapbooks on my coffee table. This next decade, I really want to make that happen for our family. Hopefully we will get to take at least one family vacation together in the next couple of years.
Third, life truly is about “getting back up” (aka for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again, but the wicked stumble when calamity strikes – Prov 24:16). Our old life group leader used to say that life has a way of putting a crust (a shell) on people. It’s just hard. Another pastor friend of ours says that life will humble you, even while you are just minding your own business, because it’s hard. I know I’ve talked a lot about the storms of life on my blog. Every person, every life, every family has storms (whether marriage problems, health problems, financial problems, relationship problems, work issues, pick your issue), but the problems do not have the ability to define you unless you give them that power. Get back up! Try again. You can do this. Don’t give up. Don’t quit.
Forgive. Forgiveness is not to say that what someone did was ok. It is not to say that you will trust someone again. It is not the same as reconciliation. It’s ok to have boundaries. Boundaries are for your safety and protection and are perfectly acceptable. But anger and hate will hurt you far more than it hurts the person you’re angry at. Forgiveness frees you! It allows that stone heart to melt and you’ll experience a warmth and a love that you never knew possible. It’s a beautiful thing. Forgiving those who hurt me was one of the best things that ever happened to me. And even better is learning to FORGIVE YOURSELF. Since you guys are still so young, maybe you don’t have a list yet of mistakes and things that you wish you had done differently. But living in the past will not change your future. You must forgive yourself, give yourself a bear hug, learn to love yourself and move forward. Trust me, once you do you will glow from the inside out.
Read your Bible. Even if you don’t believe everything it says. I realize that it sounds a little science-fictionish and farfetched but it’s such an amazing and great book. Church and the Bible are NOT the same. Church is good, but the pastor’s message is not the same as reading the message for yourself. Read the Bible for yourself. Learn to fall in love with it. I prefer the New Living Translation (NLT) for daily easy readings. It’s the easiest to understand. Begin in the New Testament. At least read the words of Jesus that are in red. Set small goals like reading words in red once a week. One year, read the daily chronological Bible. It will change your life if you let it. Oh and read Proverbs and Psalms. There is so much valuable information and wisdom in Proverbs and Psalms is my go to place when I am stressed, angry, lonely, sad, or need to praise. Find a chapter that means something to you and write it down on a piece of paper. It sounds so simple or maybe even dorky but it’s so rewarding.
Oh, and there are fewer things in life as good as loving a great dog. Doggie kisses and cuddles and playing are some of the best things in life. Take good care of your fur babies. They need you.
Oh yes, I beg you to make your marriage work. Marry wisely the first time and do whatever it takes to make it work. There will be times that it is difficult. There will be seasons that aren’t very rewarding. Stay through them. Marriage is like a tree. Sometimes it’s blooming and sometimes it’s dried up with no leaves. But that’s just the nature of marriage. Make it work. Read Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas and listen to Duane Sheriff’s marriage teachings online. There is no relationship harder, more intimate, or more rewarding than marriage. If I could change anything in my life it would be to marry wisely the first time and make it work at all costs. I so pray that for your life. Ok, now good night 🙂