The Road Less Traveled
By Dean Honeycutt
I have always encouraged my children not to give up and to always try even when it seems difficult to succeed. Sometimes we fail, and sometimes we succeed but at least we tried. It is the trying part that is difficult. When we see that something is not worth the effort, we rarely will put forth the effort to try. In other words, why bother if I am not going to succeed or at least see some progress?
I recall a time when my daughter was discouraged from trying out for a middle school basketball team. The girls already on the team were part of a traveling basketball team that she could not be a part of. During the off-season practices, my daughter felt lost and unwelcome because she did not know the drills and routines that others were accustomed to doing. She felt like giving up, but Pam and I encouraged her to try and do her best, and she made the team. We were so proud of her fortitude.
Parents always encourage their children and affirm them in what they do and participate in. We will never know our success until we try. Every child is good at something, even if it is talking, like one of mine. They are the best talker and friendliest people you have ever met. They never fail to thank a veteran for their service, and they can listen to another person’s problems. God has a purpose and place for every child. Parents, it is our responsibility to see our child move in God’s direction. What is God’s direction? God’s will is always associated with His Son Jesus Christ and the proclamation of the Gospel.
Not every child is going to excel at sports or academics. But God has gifted that child with an ability that is far more glorious than the best athlete or smartest person in the room. Parents, we cannot compare our children to other children because God has uniquely designed them for His glory. A child in the hand of God is of great value in God’s work on earth. God can use all hearts submitted to His glory. But often it is not the most talented or the smartest, but the one who is humble before God, that God will use for His glory. Think about David the runt of his family whom God made a king. Mary was a poor peasant, whom God made a mother to Jesus. Peter was an uneducated fisherman God used to build his Church. No, it is not the great and mighty God uses but the poor and humble of this life.
Children are a gift from God and should be protected and nurtured to follow and love the King of kings and the Lord of lords. Our greatest purpose will be in teaching our children to love God and share the Gospel of Christ. Our children will find fulfillment and success in this one life commitment. Just as the disciples in the Bible, if we focus primarily on talents, academics, or credentials and fail in following Jesus then we set ourselves and our children up for disappointment. Every disciple found their greatest fulfillment and effort in the Gospel. That is why Paul could say, “for me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”
Whether your child may be gifted in academics, art, or sports, or is just average they are fearfully and wonderfully made by God for His glory. Can you imagine a child pursuing a career or path like roads on a GPS map with many various ways to get to a destination? All the roads may have difficulty. But only one road leads to true happiness and fulfillment. It is the road less traveled because it does not promote self-success or achievement. It is the road of self-sacrifice and sometimes at the expense of our desires. This road may be a difficult road that your child does not want to travel. But we must encourage them to try and not give up because this road leads to the destination that will glorify God and bring fulfillment to their life.
No regrets and happy New Year,
Pastor Dean Honeycutt
Pastor Dean Honeycutt shepherds Snow Hill Baptist Church in Bakersville, NC. He may be reached at 828-385-0213, email@example.com, or visit their website at www.snowhillbaptist.com.
You can read more good Christian news from Dean HERE.