Day Writing: Parenthood Perspective
December 1, 2016
My little boy is just shy of one and a half. He gets up early most mornings, wants the news and weather turned on, eats breakfast, then is ready to do chores. Shortly after turning one he had the chore routine memorized, and would follow or lead his dad to the next bunch of animals needing cared for. He knew which grain bin fed which pen of pigs, and would grab handfuls of grain as buckets were filled, then run and throw what he hadn't eaten during transit over the appropriate fence as he "helped."
Currently, one of his daily activities is crawling into our feedlot, and wandering through the nearly 150 head of replacement heifer calves it holds. He has no fear of them as they do the yearling thing; bucking, kicking and blowing snot at his antics. He sits down, he chases them, he walks through them and "shooshes" them. After his first attempt at this didn't result in a fence being wiped out or him being run over, his father and I relaxed considerably, and have come to immensely enjoy watching our little boy do his thing. We are also looking forward to a bomb proof set of heifers.
Being a parent provides a new perspective, and there are few blessings that surpass watching your own child develop skills, gifts and talents that will last a lifetime. It's perhaps even sweeter when you see them find joy in something you yourself love.
In my own life, I often see God's plan and reason for taking me the direction he has in hindsight. It all makes perfect sense looking back, but going forward often requires blind faith. However, when I look at my child, I see things more as God must when he looks at each of us. I see the possibilities for my boy's life spiral out in front of him. I can see the potential in the talents he is finding and developing and the direction his new joys may someday lead him. I glimpse fragments of the plans the Lord has for him. Of course, I am not the one who placed those gifts and talents in his heart, nor am I the one who will ultimately lead him in a specific direction through all the options.
Which is why I pray I am able to remember my place as he grows, and to teach him to turn to God as he seeks direction in his life. Who am I to think I can even begin to imagine all that God has placed in his heart and in his future. But how exciting to see a portion of them already shining through. I didn't think one-year-olds did daily cattle and baby pig checks or could memorize which grain bin fed which pen of pigs. Or that when a piglet died he would hold and pet it tenderly. I never dreamed that he would, as a toddler, take it all so very seriously and enjoy it so immensely.
While I have no idea where his life will lead, it is incredible to be part of the process. To think that God knew this child would need what my husband and I provide as parents and through our lifestyle that He knew the delight we would experience as parents in the joy our child finds in the life we've built. What a precious gift to ponder, especially this time of year. While his future remains a joyful mystery, neither of us will be surprised if he chooses a lifetime of what he already does daily.
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"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11