Lifestyle

Connecting with God can improve connections with others

Our church is doing a series about “connecting.” I was asked to share about parenting. Sounds so simple until you start looking at your life a little more honestly.

Our children are at such fun ages. Our son is 10, our daughter is 8. They are young enough to still think we are great, but old enough to say, “I know. I know. I know.”

It’s like a mantra in our home. The “I know” mantra. Perhaps you can relate?

Don’t talk to me about homework. Ian was asking me about right obtuse and acute angles and where to put the protractor to measure them. I was like, “What!? What happened to counting pennies, nickels and dimes?”

I saw that new look in my son’s eyes that said mom might not be as smart as he once thought she was. I also had a new look in my eyes of, “Whoa I might not be as smart as I once thought I was!”

Emma had to create a shadow box. Now those are fun. Only thing, when we finished, we realized that neither of us had followed directions. How do you undo a shadow box? I mean, we had grass, trees, stones, blood sweat and tears. I even burnt my finger on the glue gun. How do you undo that?

Ian is studying the Vietnam War. I hope I learn something valuable as we go through this together.

Sometimes my mind is so full of so many thoughts that I realize there is an outside buzzing noise. I am usually fixing dinner at this point –– let’s say frying pork chops. When I look around, I see Ian or Emma is talking to me. And they have been for a while. I guess I even said yes and no a couple of times. I know the candy jar is empty and the popcicles are gone. Smart kids. They know when I am not connecting. Do I?

Sometimes –– okay, almost every night –– I go into my kids’ room and make sure no one has stolen them. Ian sleeps so deep that he never really remembers anything except being cold. He knew I was there because the blankets he had kicked off found their way back to him by morning. He knows he woke up warm. He shared once about being half-asleep, thinking, “I hope mom comes in and does the blanket thing.”

When I go into Emma’s room, I almost always get rewarded. I talk to her in “mommy tones” and tell her all the sweet things about her that she doesn’t seem to hear or believe during the day. I get these huge ear-to-ear smiles. Sometimes she even reaches out for me. But when I ask her about it the next day, she never, ever remembers a thing.

When I look way ahead to the future, I wonder what they will come back to us with? What embarrassed them about their family? What made them proud? What will they tell us we did wrong? What will they tell us we did right?

Connecting with your kids: I can’t begin to know what goes on in their minds, but I want to.

I am asking God to help me be the best mom I can be to each of them in their own individual ways. I am asking to be more intuitive in what I can do right. And I am asking God to help me change the things that are not so right.

I know he is helping me. All’s I have to do is connect with him (nothing fancy) and ask, What about you?

Cindy Jury is a freelance writer and a ministry leader at Vineyard Christian Fellowship in Federal Way. She assures that she wrote this column with the permission and assistance of Ian and Emma. And she welcomes other feedback at cjury@harbornet.com

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