This last evening I got to witness something pretty spectacular. The school our two older children attend was hosting an open house and so we joined the throngs of parents navigating the hallways and classrooms to learn all about what are kids do for the hours they are away from us each day. We were able to meet our daughter’s teachers and hear about her progress, but my son’s teachers were indisposed. This didn’t seem to be a drawback for him though as he was free to roam about the campus. Little did he know, that I had been able to speak with one of his teachers earlier in the day and then last night I was able to observe her report in action.
Before we jump into her report I need to give you a little back story. About a year ago my son was diagnosed with a reading/writing disability (a form of dyslexia). And we have worked with him since then on trying to be on par with his peers. Last year we made a good deal of progress, but we knew this was still going to be an ongoing struggle. The teacher I met with showed me his most recent reading scores and although he still isn’t necessarily where he needs to be, he has made incredible strides. But then she paused and said, “But this isn’t really the most important thing. Your son is a really good kid. He has a huge heart and he is always so encouraging to all the other students.” Cue my heart swelling with love and pride. Cut to that evening when I got to see it in action. Although he wasn’t meeting his teachers with us, we got to see him hugging, high-fiving, and talking to every classmate he saw like they were his long lost sibling. His classmates are drawn to him like magnets (now if he could only get that concept in Science).
Sometimes I think about how lucky we are with Jonas. He really has enriched our life from day one. And truthfully there isn’t any real secret to our parenting. I often hear this verse quoted in regards to parenting, “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” – Proverbs 22:6. But most often we think of this as instruction or teaching them what to do or not do and I think a better word might be model. If you want your child to be kind, show kindness. If you want your child to be loving, then love. If you want your child to be curious about the world, ask good questions. That which you long for, for your child to be should be modeled before them. I don’t say any of this from a place of pride, but rather from a place of accountability. We all have these models following us around. What are you modeling today?