Ancient History

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Reflecting on the loss of a man who made a profound impact on the world…

To maintain a joyful family requires much from both the parents and the children. Each member of the family has to become, in a special way, the servant of the others.

Pope John Paul II

Joel a seventeen-month-old servant? Can Ryley serve Tommy, can Sam serve Aidan, are hubby and I servants to each other?

I am guilty of saying to the kids “I am not your servant!” but I really am.

I try to remember that each individual member of our family has an impact, a gift to give to each other member. Sam’s relationship with Tommy is unique to the two of them, just as Tommy’s bond with Ryley is different than his bond with Joel. All these different dynamics under one roof can seem daunting and difficult to manage, but the key is not trying to manage too much. I can direct, I can lead by example, but I cannot ever fully understand the intricacies of what the kids are building amongst themselves.

I can learn from the way they serve each other, however. Aidan brings home little trinkets she wins at school on blue slip drawing days. One day she brought home toy sharks for Tommy and Sam. It thrilled them, not so much because they were the proud new guardians of plastic great white and hammerhead sharks but because their big sister thought about them. They kept thanking her over and over. I love seeing gratitude expressed between the kids. I should express my own gratitude toward them more often by telling them what gifts, what treasures they are.

Each of the four bigs kids has discovered their unique keys to making Joel laugh. Aidan runs at him waving her arms. Ryley makes faces, Sammy likes to tickle, and Tommy makes funny noises. Joel is a lucky guy! He rewards them with his gerbily grin and squeals. They see that they can make a positive impact on someone else. They have that power. They are servants.

1 comment to Servant

  • Momofmopsy

    How sweet! To be a servant is to love and put others first. We are not always sucessful at doing that. Self sometimes wins but your little ones are learning and that is an awesome responsibility that we parents have to model.

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