My family and I recently had the opportunity to go to Disneyland in California and boy did we have a blast! Seriously one of the best vacations yet! I loved it!
When we got back home, I asked my girls what they wanted to show their friends from our trip…..their response surprised me.
“Our sea shells.”
Your sea shells……but we went to Disney!!! Don’t you want to bring one of the stuff animals you won or don’t you want to show your friends some of the pictures we took of you meeting the princesses and other Disney characters?
They wanted to show the sea shells.
“Why the sea shells?” I asked.
“Because you helped us collect them.” Was their response.
We spent a few days at Disneyland…..and enjoyed EVERY minute of it but what really touched my girls hearts was the one day we took a break from Disney and traveled to the beach.
I wanted my girls to see the ocean. I wanted them to see God’s beauty, His power……experience what He created.
In Sally Clarkson’s book, Ministry of Motherhood, she talks about giving our children the Gift of Inspiration. Her whole book is wonderful and I highly recommend it, but that particular section spoke directly to my heart and I wanted to open the eyes of my children to the awesomeness of their God.
“A child who does not have the opportunity to marvel at the bigness of God, the wonders of his creation, and the reality of his supernatural work will tend to measure the questions about “who God is” according to his or her finite, limited perspective…”
“When we take the opportunity to expose our children to the glory of God displayed in a rainbow or powerful ocean waves or a star-studded night sky, we are helping them understand that there is a Being much bigger than themselves who created the universe and holds it together with his power. “-Sally Clarkson
I wanted my girls to experience their God in a much bigger way.
Being at the ocean does that.
The beauty alone takes your breath away.
The sound of the ocean waves roaring to shore, the soft breeze touching your face and the birds singing above……all testify to God’s reality and greatness.
As we walked the beach picking up sea shells I talked to my girls about how wonderful and powerful our God is. We talked about how beautiful each sea shell was that they picked up. We talked about God’s creativity, about the size of the ocean and the power of the waves……I wanted them to see God in His creation.
I wanted to be intentional and give them an opportunity to experience God in a whole new way. To open their eyes to the bigness of their God.
This week we see from our verses (Proverbs 31:1-9) that King Lemuel’s mother was an intentional woman. She was a mother who was intentional in how she taught her son, teaching him the virtues of a noble wife as she taught him the alphabet,…connecting his learning to something valuable that he would later be able to easily recall.
Using her as an inspiration, here are a few ways we can be intentional with our kids……everyday
- Write “I think you’re amazing because...” notes in their lunch boxes, their rooms, their cars.
- Go out on a special date with them….
- Send them encouraging text messages
- Pray together
- Read the bible together….and discuss what you read
- Read books together
- Serve together
- Intentionally slow down……look them in the eyes and tell them how much you love them
- Give them a hug
- Talk with them and rub their backs as you do……my girls love that!
- Laugh with them
- Smile at them
Being intentional is about turning off the TV, not answering the phone or the emails, the tweets or the Facebook comments, and really seeing your family. Giving them undivided time and attention. It’s talking with them over a meal. It’s asking them questions, doing things together like coloring, drawing, tickling and laughing together. Not necessarily spending money, but spending time together………that’s what’s truly priceless.
Being intentional is about really seeing them and purposefully investing in their lives.
What are some ways that you are intentional with your kids? I believe we learn best from one another! I’d love to hear your ideas! What would you add to my list? Which ones are your favorite?
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Love God Greatly!