A friend of mine posted a picture on Twitter the other day from inside a rollercoaster car looking down the vast track, with the caption, ‘Here we go’! As he and his wife had just become parents (of two adoptive children, no less!), I asked him if the picture was a metaphor. I think the picture absolutely hits the nail on the head! Parenting is full of the highest highs and the lowest lows. How do we enjoy the highs and survive the lows? Some circumstances are beyond our control, but for all the rest, one foundational tactic would be to take a lesson from our own one-year-olds.
One-year-olds are sponges of wonder! Whenever I see a baby sitting up on their own, head bobbing, with eyes wide open, I think of the word ‘wonder’.
If they had a job description it would read, Eat, drink, poop, sleep and wonder—be amazed! We would do well to follow their example. This may seem like weird advice, but I honestly believe that if we could make a habit of stopping every now and then to marvel at the miracle that is life, we would be far more grateful and therefore stable people.
In Psalm 139 the writer sings his praise of God’s amazing creativity when he says:
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made...
Make a habit of seeing the wonder in the design and development of your kids, especially in the first year. As they start to communicate back to you, pull themselves up or even take their first step—look and be amazed.
Dean and Kris Dryden have 5 children aged 5-20 years old. Dean is the Families Worker for Cornerstone Church Kingston, and you will find both of them involved in a variety of family activities at The Hub.