Learning From Our Children’s Faith

Every now and then our children shock us. They overwhelm us with their knowledge and we find ourselves in the position of being the student under their tuteledge! Our kids are always fun, they are stealth in their proclamation of their faith and they love the heck out of each other and us. We’ve long acknowledged that we don’t need friends to make our lives full as we have each other and we have our children. As they grow they are becoming more and more our posse. Who better to run the river with than them? Who better to throw a party with than them? Who better with to spend a girls night with than them? Who better to throw together an impromptu game of football with than them? Seriously, we’ve set about raising them as their parents with the goal that one day we would be their best friends and they each others best friends.

However, we also understand that as children and young adults, they still need parents whom they dislike ocassionally. Parents who aren’t always on the same page as they are, who see the big picture. Parents who drag them to mass every Sunday (or more often), for example. Parents who put more emphasis on the Cathechism than on what’s cool. Which is why when our children do or say something that falls in line with what we’ve been teaching them, and hopefully modelling, for their entire lives we are so full of joy and pride.

This past week, Kady competed in the 2013 ICF Canoe Freestyle World Championships — a huge feat for a 14 year old who only really started kayaking the end of last season. Last year, when we were out here at NOC for World Cup, Kady was terrified of the feature. This past April, Kady was not terrified, but rather somewhat timid and green, lacking confidence. The Kady we saw compete on Wed was none of those things, she was determined, confident and remarkably calm. She placed fourth and secured a spot in finals. All week, Kady went to each open training session and soaked up the entire experience. Finals were Sunday so we found a mass SAturday night … it was a Spanish Mass and none of us understood a lick of what was being said. But for whatever reason, the Priest found it necessary to intersperse some English. The message was that knowledge is great, but true wisdom comes from walking with God, hand in hand — in a nutshell.

We were all nervous going into finals on Sunday … all of us, except Kady. She was pumped, she was stoked, she was extremely excited, but not at all nervous. She was steady and confident and surprisingly calm. Our young Kady, the beacon of strength. We watched her compete, each ride (of 3) getting better than the last. She placed 4th in her first World’s just 50 points behind 3rd place and was thrilled with her rides! Kady was so happy to simply be there … getting into finals was the icing on the cake! This girl, who I know so well, is a fierce competitor, but also the sweetest and most surprising person I’ll ever meet. I asked her on our way home how she was able to keep the intense pressure at bay and remain so calm. Her words made my heart swell, my eyes tear up and my pride and wonder to rise to a whole new level. Her words, “I trust God.”

I’m humbled as her mom. Our children have so very much to teach us if we simply open our hearts to the faith-filled youth.  It’s overwhelming.  They sometimes see the big picture better than we ever can. Winning is nice, it makes competing fun. Fame is nice, it makes us feel important. But faith, walking hand-in-hand with God is what will get us to our destination. It is all Dan & I want for our children; to spend an eternity in His glory. Our family motto, Faith, Family, Fun is geared toward that very mission. I’m happy for Kady that she competed at such a high level in a sport that she loves. I’m proud of Kady for trusting God in all she does.

 

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