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Give Life to Your Story: Vision

Mike Green serves as Executive Director of Tuscaloosa Youth For Christ. He and his wife, Laura, have two grown children and a grandson. To reach Mike, please email him at mike@tuscaloosayfc.com.  Mike Green serves as Executive Director of Tuscaloosa Youth For Christ. He and his wife, Laura, have two grown children and a grandson. To reach Mike, please email him at mike@tuscaloosayfc.com. Mike Green

I’m sure you caught at least a glimpse of the Olympics this past month. I was inspired by the many stories of youth and young adults who epitomized commitment and sacrifice to accomplish their Olympic dreams. It was easy to watch amazing feats of strength, endurance, and speed and think for an instance, “I could do that.” Or at least, “I used to be able to do that.” The truth is no “normal” human being could come close to eclipsing their record-breaking achievements. They made it look so easy. The athletes were amazing.

So why did they do it? Have you taken a minute to think about their “whys”? Although each “why” is unique, they are all somehow wrapped around a vision each athlete has. A vision of not only the accomplishment but also of how they will feel and life will change by doing so. That vision was the fuel that fired these athletes through countless hours of intense hard work and sacrifice. Every day, they were faced head-on with their own question --- Is it worth it? And far more days than not, their answer was “yes.” 

Sacrifice and commitment are terms and ideas that seem to have been lost to many in our “give it to me now” culture. But it is from this culture that these examples have arisen. Their visions make them unique. These amazing athletes have risen to the top in their sports when so many of their peers seem open to just get by in life. If vision is such a powerful force, as I propose, how do we instill vision and hope in the lives of our youth? If we can answer this question, we have the opportunity as parents to change the course of our children’s lives. Wow, that sounds dramatic. But I think it’s true. So how do we do it?

Here are three quick catalysts for instilling vision in your child. One, remember it’s not your vision. The goal is to help our kids find the vision that they and God have for their lives, not the one we have chosen for them. Two, give your children opportunities to talk about their dreams. Be a sounding board for your child. Try not to judge their dreams too quickly. Remember that they are figuring things out, and visions tend to change. Then three, give them opportunities to explore their visions of the future. Whether it’s a sport, career, hobby etc. Give them a chance to experience these activities. Okay, these are all pretty simple. Concepts you probably already knew. But are you practicing them? As you support and believe in your kids, you have the incredible opportunity to influence who they are. And who they are is actually the more important issue. The dreams are simply a tool we have been given as parents to create the drive, motivation and passion for life that God wants for us all. 

I hope you have the next Michael Phelps developing under your roof. But more importantly, I hope you are building a young man or young woman who will change our world for the good. We need them. 

 

 

 

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Lake Tuscaloosa Living (LTL) is the premier community newspaper, covering the great people, places and activities of the area.

 

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