Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Changing Your Perspective: Losing Your Marbles

We all know that children grow up fast-- too fast! In the blink of an eye, your child is crawling, then walking, then heading to school, and before you know it, they are getting their driver's license. However, sometimes you really don't see just how quickly your children grow up. Recently, my husband and I took a course at our church that opened our eyes to just how quickly time with your children goes by. Our perspective on parenting completely changed and has greatly impacted how we spend our time with our children.

One Marble at a Time

My husband and I watched a video by Reggie Joiner, featuring a Legacy Jar to represent your child's life. Basically, the video started out showing a jar of marbles. Each marble represented the number of weeks in your child's life from birth to 18 (936 marbles). Then, it showed how many marbles are left at various stages in your child's life after removing one marble per week. It was startling to see just how quickly the marbles began to dwindle.

While the idea of the video is not to freak you out about how much time you're losing before your child moves out, it opened our eyes to just how much time we have left. It made us look back at our childrens' lives to see areas where we missed opportunities and the amount of opportunities we had left.

The overall message of the video and the idea of tracking your child's life via marbles is to begin parenting with intent. Basically, you want each marble removed from the jar to count. Each marble represents an opportunity to create valuable memories with your children through actions and activities that promote morals, values, and relationships. It's the idea that you intentionally spend time, real time, with your children with intentional lessons because time with your children is limited.

Too often we get caught up in life and time just slips by. With the mindset and a visual to see just how much time you have left with your child in your home, you're able to notice more opportunities to spend time with your child. You intentionally take the time to build lasting memories with your child before time runs out.

While I'm sure you don't have nearly 1000 marbles per kid laying around your house, I encourage you to figure out how much time you actually have left to make lasting memories. An easy way to do it is by downloading a the free app, Legacy, which allows you to put in your childrens' birth dates to see the approximate amount of weeks you have until your children turn 18.

If you're anything like us, it will really open your eyes as to how quickly time has gone by, what time is left, and how to use the remaining time.

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