As parents, we make promises to our children that we can’t always keep. Promises like, “I will never leave you” or “I will always be there for you”. When in reality, every one of us miss a phone call, or we get stuck in traffic and arrive after the game. Life is inevitable but one thing is for sure we always have good intentions. We must teach our children to survive when our intentions don’t match the impact that we have.
Many times we intend to give them the best life, but maybe our financial choices leads to a mediocre experience. What do we do when our promises create painful memories for them? How do we answer the questions that they pose when things don’t pan out the way we said. We remain honest. We own up to our failures and we practice making promises that there is a realistic outlook of keeping. Our children need to know that we are not perfect, but even in our imperfections our love for them always shines through.
I can only remember one promise that my mom failed to keep, but she acknowledged the difficulty in arriving at that promise and she never quit trying to accomplish it until I freed her, and released the hold of my expectations. She needed to know that as her child, I recognized her struggle to make that promise a reality and the impact of her truthfulness solidified the love behind her intent.
Colossians 3:9 says, “Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices”. The integrity of a Christian relies on the truths that they live and express.
John 8:32 says, “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free”.
In a recent Facebook post Jada Pinkett Smith said, “Every moment, every interaction, every word is a creation of a memory”. If that statement is true, then every moment counts toward eternity. That scripture speaks explicitly about not forgetting the experiences of this life, using those memories to teach our children. It is through the memories of past generations that taught us how to treat God.
9 “But watch out! Be careful never to forget what you yourself have seen. Do not let these memories escape from your mind as long as you live! And be sure to pass them on to your children and grandchildren. 10 Never forget the day when you stood before the Lord your God at Mount Sinai, where he told me, ‘Summon the people before me, and I will personally instruct them. Then they will learn to fear me as long as they live, and they will teach their children to fear me also. Deuteronomy 4: 9-10 (NLT)
I have heard people jokingly say, “If I knew marriage was going to be like this, I would have stayed single”. Well, the reason why they did not know or understand the complexity of marriage is not because they never saw married couples. The problem is that those couples never chose to share their memories of the not so good times. In fact they never told us how to weather the “relationship” storm. According to the scripture referenced above, It is vital that we use our memories as tools for instructing and equipping our children to handle life’s difficult moments and keep it moving.
Your memories are a treasure for the next generation so, what are you doing with them?