Some time ago, I listening to a young person talking about his frustration with his parents. He wants his parents to be supportive. However, it’s hard when he’s in an area that they don’t understand. I sympathize with the person; as I’ve heard this story, before.
In fact, my father had a similar story. Around 1985, I discovered that my father had a gift for sketch drawing. This would have been in the ’50s. His parents were very supportive and my grandfather thought Dad should pursue it. There are just two problems, my dad was reluctant and my grandfather went overboard.
Does the above two scenarios sound familiar? Would you like some helpful suggestions in encouraging your son or daughter? I have my own gifts and I can see both sides; though I am not a parent. I would like to offer some ideas that may be of help to you.
For any dream to come true, there needs to be a desire to pursue it. As a kid, I had a natural gift for writing. It really did not surprise my parents; as I had a love of reading books or listening to books on tapes. I can also recall the writing assignments for my English classes. I definitely had a talent and it needed to be encouraged.
However, there is just one problem. I did not have a heartfelt desire to pursue it. Stockton University has proven to be the best thing to have happened. I did not just come to accept Jesus, as my Lord and Savior. It’s also where I started to accept the reality of my gift for writing. In fact, it’s where I made my first attempt to write a book.
My desire to write grew; however, I needed a focus for my writings. Thankfully, my heart was open to helpful advice and ideas from my professors, friends, and family. Years later, I opted to write for a computer magazine located on the Internet. Thankfully, I had an Editor that knew how to encourage and not push.
What’s my point? If your son or daughter has a desire to pursue then your child will do it. My mother told me that I could be a writer and she’s right. My mother has a strong personality and she could push. Guess what? She did not push me. She wisely let her son make his own decision. Her decision paid off.
I could say the same thing, for my dad. Years later, I shared with my father about one of my concerns in writing. He gave a very helpful advice and I do appreciate it. Don’t be afraid to talk with your kids about their dreams.
Here is my second tip, for you. Do not be critical about their dream but you should be real. Do you have concerns about your son’s career choice? If so, you should talk to them about it. You are not being negative if you express your concerns. However, you should speak the truth in love. Here is a good illustration for you.
What if, blogging had been available when I was in high school and I had a desire to pursue it. On the one hand, my parents would say “It’s a starting point but I don’t get it.”, “How are you going to earn a living with it?”, and “It looks more like a hobby than a real job.” My parents would be right to ask such questions and they are supportive of my writing.
What am I saying? Yes, I needed to be encouraged in my writing career; however, I needed to be realistic. Though my parents did not have any knowledge about computer, the Internet, and blogging; they had the insights that I did need. They would have understood the need to discipline my time and energy; I did not have discipline.
They could have helped in creating story ideas. I could just hear my father say “Why don’t you read the paper? You could learn something and get some ideas.” They would have likely pointed to my real need for a day job. I could just see my mother suggesting a job at the local newspaper. For a day job, it would have a good idea.
What if, my parents chose to simply encourage and never spoke of their concerns or issues? I could have easily gotten into a world of trouble. The Internet can provide a wealth of information; however, it cannot provide insights and a moral compass. These two items are developed over time and one’s parents have a role to play in its development.
Here is another suggestion and it’s one that I learned from a friend. She’s a mother of three children and she spoke of praying for the kids. My friend is a wise woman and I agree. Don’t be afraid to talk to God, the Father about your children’s dream or where they are heading.
Have you ever read the Psalms? If not, you are in for a shocker. King David is the author of many of these songs and prayers. Guess what? David knew how to keep it real when he talked with God. David’s emotions ran the gauntlet. Yet, King David believed and trusted God. I’d encourage you to do the same thing.
Don’t be afraid to share your concerns, fears, and anxiety with God, the Father. Why? It is because God loves you and your children. God, the Father is willing to help but you need to ask. Here is another shocker for you. You don’t have to be eloquent in prayer. It can be as simple as, “Please help me, God.”