The other day I was awakened by constant chirping. Somewhere in my sleepy fog I wondered if it was our robins. I buried my head under a pillow. After all, the babies couldn’t possibly be ready to leave the nest…..
We were delighted to find a robin’s nest this summer. Carefully built on an over head deck beam that supports grape vines. So carefully hidden I had to use a step stool to get to the nest. By tucking my camera between the large grape leaves I was able to catch an occasional picture to show to the littles. Mamma Robin was very gracious about my weekly visits. She would flutter off the nest when I emerged from the house with stool in hand and watched carefully from a nearby tree.
I felt privileged to watch the Robin family. From delicate eggs to needy chicks the babies grew. Several mornings I noticed daddy Robin providing food for the growing chicks, and keeping a watchful eye over the nest. I marveled at how the large leaves kept the nest hidden from the passing hawks. A slight wind could have easily exposed the vulnerable babies, yet before I knew it the chicks were large and feathered.
“But you are a shield around me, O Lord…” Psalm 3:3a
Not long ago, a friend shared with me her grief of one of her children preparing to move out. She commented “it’s easier when I’m sending them off then to see them leave just to move out….” She has sent children off to college, marriage and even ministry. My mothers heart hurts for her.
I recently attended a class for homeschooling parents. We covered everything from our states laws to the learning styles of our children, and so much more. Parents were encouraged to set goals in parenting, and to establish a family mission statement.
Although I mentally have a list of dreams and goals for my children, I had never thought to write them down. I have to confess, I nearly drew a blank when I pulled out a piece of paper and gave it more careful consideration.
As I’ve been prayerfully planning curriculum the last couple of weeks, I was struck with how overwhelming a task it has become. I even found a seed of bitterness trying to sprout at my perception of my husbands lack of involvement. As I took my grumbling to prayer, I realized I needed to set parenting goals with my husband. Yes, I am the primary teacher in the littles homeschool time, but like daddy Robin, my husband is busy providing for and watching over his family. Although we have different roles in parenting, our goals must be united.
When I next checked the nest I found it empty. I thought of and prayed for my friend. I know she has had hopes and dreams for her children. If she didn’t write them down, I pray the Lord reminds her of them.
Like the Robin’s, one day I will see my littles leave the nest. I expect they will make some mistakes when they finally spread their wings and fly on their own. For now, we will set goals for teaching and training them in the way they should go.
“Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her…” Proverbs 31:28
Do you have a list of parenting goals?