Kids, this is my letter to you. I watch your little lives unfolding and I wonder who you will become, what you will do with your lives. I ask myself about the places you will go. I know that your path will look very different from mine, this I know without a doubt. But through it all, no matter who you end up becoming, I hope these principles will be cemented into your very being.
THINGS I WANT MY KIDS TO ALWAYS KNOW – WITHOUT A DOUBT.
Pray always. God is bigger than you are, bigger than your fears, bigger than your triumphs. Don’t worry. Take it to Him, He’s got it. When you see His hand working in your life thank Him. Pray.
Cultivate contentment. It is great to dream, I want you to dream big dreams, to scheme plans that amaze me… but in the midst of your wants and dreams, don’t forget all the things that you have. Be content.
In all things, be kind. Choosing kindness even in the face of adversity, even when others can not repay you, even when people have hurt you, return kindness to them. It takes courage, makes you stronger, and eventually will come back to you. I promise. You will have many regrets in your life, but kindness will not be one of them.
Word hard, then work some more. Take pride in your work, be glad in the successes that you produce, but don’t allow those successes to cause you to think less of those around you. You don’t know what they have been through and how far others have come. Stay humble. Remember, you have a lot more work left to do.
Don’t forget to dream. In your life disappointments will come, some of them will be big, really big, there will be obstacles that will make you want to give up. Don’t. Hope always and fill your mind with plans. Then work towards your plans. Your dreams will become reality, and you can dream again.
You will get hurt. There will be some deep hurts that will come to your life. Things that you will think you can never overcome – but you can. Choose to forgive first. It takes unimaginable strength to forgive. Don’t give someone control over your thoughts by carrying a grudge. Not forgiving someone gives them a power over you. For your sake, even more than theirs, forgive them. Quickly, fully and first.
Failures in your life can be a gift. Act like it. When you make a mistake, own it. Learn from it, and get up and ask yourself what you learned from the experience. Don’t allow a mistake to color your opinion of yourself – give yourself grace. If others make a mistake, show them the same grace.
Chill. Look for the big picture. Ask yourself before getting upset about something if it will matter when you are 80. When you are looking back on your life will this issue be important. If yes, than fight for it – fight hard. But if it is like the other 99.9% of things in life, let it go. It is not worth loss of sleep or smiles.
One day I will not be behind you, one day I will just be the voice in the back of your head asking you if you are making the right choice. Even when I am not there, even when no one is there, do the right thing. Always.
When you make a mess clean it up. Your dishes, your room, your relationships, when you wrong someone work to make it right. When you break something fix it.
Know that no matter what, no matter where you are, no matter what you have do, no matter who you ultimately become, I love you more than you could ever imagine. I am rooting for you and your biggest cheerleader. You my child are loved!