I don't generally use Parade Magazine as a source, but I can't resist the quote today of actor Jack Black: "The more sleep I get, the better dad I am. Parenting is 90% energy; if you don't have it, then there tends to be some lazy TV watching days with the kids, and that ain't gettin' it done. A great day with them--my sons are 4 and 2--is an energized adventure into the world." I like different parts of this statement, but for now, did you notice the 90% that my friend and Jack mentioned? Endurance and energy.
Building Bravehearts is about children succeeding by having the courage to try. Not just trying once, but trying again and again: persevering, enduring. Which requires energy. Success in any endeavor--school, work, relationships, or parenting--depends on trying, over and over, even when things are hard. There is certainly an element of ability and skill needed, but those are empty without endurance.
How can we help our children learn to try and try again?
Our small group at church began studying James this week. What a powerful book of faith in action. Notice the result of the trials we face from James 1:2-3: "Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing."
Last, a side note. Endurance develops from facing trials. But Jack's point of the need for rest is well taken. We, including our children, endure and face trials better when some basics are in place. Rest is one of them, how are your children doing? How about good food, short on sweets and caffeine, and high on vegetables and good carbs? How about emotionally? Do your children have a safe place and feel loved? And the list can continue. What are other ways to make sure each child has energy and strength to endure?