Wednesday, October 24, 2012
I often complain about modern technology and conveniences making us lazy, blah, blah, blah. It’s one of my soap boxes. However, I never – NEVER – complain about my DVR. I love it. Really love.
I am recording and watching both X Factor and The Voice. I know, you are supposed to choose a side and only watch that particular show. But I can’t. I love Simon Cowell. And I love Blake Shelton and Adam Levine. As judges, I mean. Therefore, both have space on my precious DVR.
The beginning auditions and eliminations are my favorite part. I am less excited when it comes to the point of the public voting. I find the beginning so exciting. And emotional. Yes, I cry. Tears. I love hearing their stories. Seeing the start of what is possibly an amazing journey. Hearing the passion of their dreams. Watching the clippings of their homes and noting that many of them come from very modest backgrounds. Some are truly poor and struggling to make ends meet.
For them, this truly is an opportunity of a life time. I can’t help but cheer for them. I am emotionally invested now in their journeys. And I share their heart break when they are sent home. I’m chanting, “Don’t give up! Don’t give up!” I am hoping the brief glimpse of seeing a different lifestyle will give them the intestinal fortitude they need to continue pursuing their dreams.
The exciting part is some will NOT give up. They will keep trying. Keep pushing. Keep dreaming. On both shows, there has been young men come back for another tryout after not making it the first time. I love that. So do the judges. When you see they have not given up, you want them to make it this time SO MUCH.
I believe this is what John Maxwell calls failing forward. (Failing Forward is the title of one of his books.) These contestants are taking what they have learned from a failure, implementing the lessons, and trying again. They also realize that failure is an event, not a person.
Justin was so distraught one night lying in bed. “Mom,” he says with tears in his eyes, “what if I fail at football? Or other stuff I do?”
“Justin, sweetheart, you are going to fail a lot in life. A LOT.”
Shock fills his eyes. “Great Mom! Thanks a lot. Now I feel a lot better.” I laughed at his sarcasm. I continue to explain to him how failure is a good thing. It means he is trying new things. No one is great at every thing they do the first time. If a person is not failing, it means they are never trying anything new. Therefore, they are not growing as a person, or in their faith.
God isn’t calling us to live inside a tiny bubble that feels comfortable and where failure never happens. How is that going to bring Him glory? Plain and simple, it is not.
I want my children to experience failure early in life. So I can coach them to pick themselves up, dust off, think about the lesson that is surely in there, and TRY AGAIN. DO NOT GIVE UP. The dreams in their hearts now, and the new ones to come, are God-given dreams. Pursuing their dreams will bring God glory.
I want them to stretch far outside the comfortable, and into the land of great risk. I want them to walk in a place where dreams can only be accomplished with God’s Mighty Hand. I want them to experience accomplishments so great that people will ask, “How on earth did s/he do that?” So they can reply, “God did it through me.”
Here is a harsh reality, though. Most of good parenting is caught, not taught. My children need to see their Dad and I walking this talk. They need to have footsteps to follow in. We, as parents, have to dream God-sized dreams. Take risks. Try new things. This isn’t one of those areas we can use the “Do as I say, not as I do” parenting pass.
This is too big. Too important. Dream. Fail. Learn. Try. Don’t give up. Succeed. Give God the glory.
“‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.” Mark 9:23
Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed. Proverbs 16:3
But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded. 2 Chronicles 15:7