My wife and I have five young children ranging from five months to eight years old. We both work, are involved at City Church and in our community, and have a large extended family in the Houston area. It feels like there is always an event to attend or a family member to visit. Our calendars can be so full that we forget to make time for those closest to us. At the beginning of the school year, I decided that we were going to make the best of some of the mundane parts of life together. Specifically, I wanted to be intentional with our morning commute.
My work schedule is a little different in that I typically start my work at 10 a.m. On a typical school day, I load up my SUV with my two daughters, Bella and Abby, and my oldest son, Josiah, for a fifteen to twenty minute drive to school. It would be easy for me to turn up the music and not engage. But most days we play games, sing songs, tell stories, or ask each other questions on our drive. I've made up games and made a playlist for car karaoke. My children dance, sing, and enjoy these moments.
After dropping off the girls, my son Josiah and I have some time before he has to be dropped off. Josiah loves to play sports, so we decided that each morning we were going to get to school early to work on ground balls or dribbling. I have set my mind to be intentional in the mundane things of life and to try to make the most of my time with my kids. There is beauty in the mundane. I see this as my son raps and my daughter giggles on our way to school. All of these small moments are beautiful, God-given moments.
I try to regularly take my kids to do something they like. It looks different for each of them. Some days we go to the park, some days we go fishing, some days it's a University of Houston sporting event, some days we get snow cones, and some days it's going to the public library. The common theme is that we are together! I am trying to do my best as a father. Some days are better than others, but I strive to be present.
It seems like just yesterday our oldest daughter, Bella, was born, and she is now eight. I am reminded of James' words, "What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes." Knowing this, I believe I must invest my life in things that will have ripples into eternity. I am not a perfect parent and I fail daily, but in these small, mundane moments I hope that my children will see God's love and beauty.