Tuesday – September 10, 2013; 1 Timothy 4:6-16

These are the things you must insist on and teach. Let no one despise your youth, but set the believers an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. Until I arrive, give attention to the public reading of scripture, to exhorting, to teaching. Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you through prophecy with the laying on of hands by the council of elders.  Put these things into practice, devote yourself to them, so that all may see your progress. Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; continue in these things, for in doing this you will save both yourself and your hearers.

Being a parent also means being a teacher.  We are the first teachers our children ever have, we have done it all from teaching them how to eat and dress, to how to get ready for school, do homework, ride a bicycle, and drive a car.  We also teach them how to face many of life‘s challenges, and how to be decent people in the world, living examples of faith in action!

At least we try to teach them these things…but a big part of being a teacher is learning, and as single parents we can be as much student as teacher, and as students we often need to learn from others, our friends, family and other parents (single and otherwise).

As students it helps to be open-minded and receptive to these lessons, even the tough ones.

Like when we realize that we have made a mistake in our parenting or discover that we have been taking a course of action that is not working, and now need to changes something, despite how wounded our pride may be. Like when we learn that our children have minds of their own, and do not always take our lessons to heart…

But the, there are times when we learn good lessons from our children, like when my daughter taught me the joy of just playing, or her views of the power of the universe and the joy of simply living in the now.  Her kindness for animals and for the sick, and her determination to simply be herself no matter what anyone thinks!

I have learned to be a better person from raising her on my own, learned to be more patient, to focus on things that really matter in life, like love and relationships, and how to accept my own limitations, and when to reach out for help; and I have learned from offering help to other single parents as well.

We all have gifts to share as we teach and learn together, when we use these gifts for teaching and for raising our children we grow stronger together, and the kingdom of God comes just a little bit closer to us.

Let us Pray:

God, please help us to teach our children with love and patience.  Help us also to learn as we teach, and to share what we have learned with each other: our children and all those around us.  Thank you that in our teaching and sharing we can become immersed in your grace, and get a glimpse of your kingdom, here, in the midst of our lives.

Amen

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