Our Children Are Watching

My friend Mandy Fender has invited me to join in her Transparency Challenge. This is where we call ourselves out on a few things and hope to help you keep from making the same mistakes. We may embarrass ourselves, but we think it'll be worth it if we can help someone out. So ... here's my first Transparency Challenge blog. What am I calling myself out on? Well ... I'm a terrible sports fan. Here goes:

The Dallas Cowboys didn't lose last weekend. I refuse to recognize it, so it isn't true. Oh they scored fewer points than the other team? So what? The Cowboys had more fans there! So they're the true winner. And the officiating was HORRIBLE! The whole system is set up and it's unfair.

We won. End of story.

I said to my children, "This is how you lose! You cry ... you whine ... you say it's unfair ... and you declare yourself as the winner at all costs!"

I kid. After the game was over, I wanted to act like that. But I looked over at the poor kids that have to call me "Dad" and I remembered that they were watching me. They see it all. And they remember. 

If I toss a piece of trash on the ground, they see. And down the road, if I don't teach them better, there's a good chance they'll do the same thing. If I chew out the waitress for getting my order wrong or spilling my drink ... guess what ... yup, they see it and will probably do it.

What if someone deserves it? What if they're just a down-right despicable person? Then it's okay to give them a piece of my mind or a punch in the face, right? 

Well ... I guess it depends who you ask. 

I think we all want our children to grow up and be good people. And I'm pretty sure we would love for them to be leaders, either in their community or even their city or state. Hey, why not our country? 

I'm not so certain they'd be able to do that if we don't teach them to work together. Now I'm not making this one of those political posts that we've all seen waaaaay too many of, but I think there are a lot of people setting really bad examples right now. Whether it be on social media, on television, or other public figures, there is a resounding call for division almost everywhere we look. 

Yeah, I know they might be calling for people to join together, but they're calling for them to join together against something that we should unite for. Doesn't that equate to division?

Do we really want that? Do we want our children to believe in division? Or do we teach them unity?

We are free to disagree. And voicing our opinions is a right that many men and women, far greater than me, have fought for. But when do we stop disagreeing and join together? 

I don't know about you, but I think I want my children to see me be supportive. I want to support those like me and those who are different. When I disagree with someone, I want my children to watch me as I try to understand differing views. I can't tell them to love others if I'm spewing hate with every breath.

When we pray together, my family will pray for our country and our leaders. The ones we agree with and the ones we don't. We will pray for those who don't agree with our views. And we will even pray for those who don't like us.

We won't worry about what's to come. That is beyond our control.

Times are difficult right now. But, aren't they always difficult in one way or another? There's always something, right? I don't know what you do when things get tough or you feel like the world is going into the fires of Mount Doom. But I know what I do. And it gives me great comfort. 

Let's set a good example for this next generation. However we can, let's come together or we will not stand. It starts small before it can be big. Let's do this. Remember, our children are watching us.

Don't forget about the Christian Book Box drawing on February 1st! I'm giving away books by Brandon Sanderson, Rachelle Dekker, Ronie Kendig, April Newell, Mandy Fender, and more! Click here to enter!