Parents, I want to ask you a question—Are you satisfied with your family’s 4G plan? No, I don’t mean your 4G wireless plan. In this 4G plan, there are no coverage maps claiming one network’s plan is better than the another. You won’t see Jamie Foxx citing studies to sway you to switch networks or a ‘normal Joe’ pitching, “Can you hear me now?”
No, the 4G Family Plan I am talking about involves Growing, Giving, Gathering, and Gratefulness. As consumers, we have now officially entered the Christmas shopping season. Store aisles are filled with Christmas decorations, toys, and big red bows. Black Friday ads leak out day-by-day and force us to focus on the best deals and how we can plan out our early morning shopping sprees.
On the contrary, Thanksgiving is becoming the forgotten holiday. As a society, the traditional, family-centered Turkey day has morphed into super-early bird sales that start when we should be sitting down at the family table giving thanks.
Here’s the good news—you don’t have to get caught up in the hype. As a parent, you can begin to upgrade your family’s 4G plan today! What a better time to start than during the season of thankfulness! Over the next 4 weeks, I will help you upgrade your family’s 4G plan so that you can enjoy this Thanksgiving season rather than skipping it and going straight into Christmas.
Growing Your Family’s Faith
As we begin to upgrade our Family’s 4G Plan, we must continue to grow in our faith. Growing in faith requires an openness to grow. As parents, we must model this openness and provide a loving and supportive home which allows our children’s faith to grow.
I love how Jesus’ “Parable of the Sower” illustrates growth using the imagery of soil and seed. In Luke 8:4-15, Jesus describes what happens to the seeds that a farmer spreads on his land. Remember, these fields are not the flat, mega-farms you see in the Midwest! The terrain in which Jesus described was most likely rugged, rocky, mountainous terrain. Here is a brief summary of where the farmer’s seeds fell:
- Walking paths
- Rocky ground
- Good soil
Well, the seed that fell on the paths was trampled on and eaten by birds. The seed that fell on rocky ground did not survive because there was not enough moisture. The seed that fell in the weeds was eventually overtaken by the weeds.
But…the seeds that fell in the good soil produced a crop 100 times more than was planted! Did you catch that?
As parents, we control the richness of our home’s “soil” and can add “water” by reading His Word, apply “fertilizer” by professing our faith, and shine “light” by sharing our stories with our kids.
If I may, I would like to share a quick story about how I am enriching the soil of our home with my son, Lincoln. As many of you know, I wrote Friday Night Lights for Fathers and Sons to help me develop a deeper relationship with him. Faith is one of the Game Days that I developed as part of the 10-Game Season.
Lincoln and I just started Game Day 4: Chariots of Fire Faith. Lincoln filled 4 red Solo cups with different kinds of “soil,” which included 1) Bird seed, 2) Rocks, 3) Weeds, and 4) Fertilized potting soil.
In the picture below, you can see that the birds (maybe squirrels) knocked over the bird seed Solo cup, the weeds have withered, and the rocks have no nutrients to grow the seed. But, the Solo cup with the fertilized potting soil is still standing, is retaining moisture, and is getting the sunlight it needs.
The seeds have yet to sprout, but Lincoln and I both have faith that the seeds will grow and produce more than was planted. Lincoln knows the story of the Parable of the Sower and I know that Lincoln’s faith is growing.
Let me know how you are enriching the soil of your home to cultivate a growing faith in your family. I invite you to take a moment to share your thoughts and ideas in the Comments section below. Share this post on Facebook or Twitter if you feel this would benefit any of the parents/families you know-I would be honored to serve them too!
Make sure to stop back next week! I will be announcing the Playoff Parenting Power Pack for 2017 GIVEAWAY (worth over $400!). You won’t want to miss your chance at the amazing parenting resources I am giving away!
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