David and I have 4 children who have always been active and involved in athletics (among other things.) Our daughters are both volleyball players, so we’ve spent a LOT of time at gyms, learning the game, and enjoying watching our girls grow in countless ways because of their participation in Hurricanes Volleyball.
But, during my devotions time one morning, I remembered a conversation about volleyball that I had with Lizzie Gray several years ago, and I realized she had given me the perfect parenting illustration when she was only about 14 years old. 😊
Let me set the stage for you first. Both of our girls are setters, so they are literally involved in every play on the volleyball court as the ball is always supposed to run through them to set up the final send-over during the rally. Because of that, Lizzie Gray told me that there really is no time for a setter to lament a bad set or get hung up on a mistake she made– she HAS to move on, because she will soon have to do it all over again whether she’s ready or not. Both of my girls have always appreciated that part of their position because many girls struggle with “getting in their own head” during the game and becoming less effective at their roles because they second guess themselves too much.
That “setter’s mindset” was the first thing I thought of when I read the familiar words in Philippians 3:
“forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (v 13-14)
And, then I thought about how that same mindset was so needed in my role as Mama and how important it was for me to keep my head in the game, so I can press on towards the goal– the mission!– that God has given me.
It’s so easy to get in our own heads, isn’t it?
We’re always second guessing our abilities and our usefulness when we stumble as parents. Satan loves to whisper lies to us about how we’re failing or we’re not enough; how we’re ruining our kids or how our kids will hate us… his tricks never change!
But everything in our home runs through us, doesn’t it? Just like the setter on the volleyball court, we are the ones that are privileged to set everyone else up to “make the plays” that come their way.
We get to teach them. We get to counsel them. We get to cheer them on. We get to disciple them. We get to discipline them. We get to soothe them. We get to nurse them. We get to KNOW them in ways that few, if any, others in their lives will ever know them. What an incredible privilege!
But, we often dwell on our failures instead of confessing them and pressing on towards the goal, don’t we? We forget that humble confession of our mistakes often opens INCREDIBLE doors for discipleship and growth within your family!! We don’t even allow ourselves to learn the lessons that can be gleaned from those missteps, so we’re able to make the adjustments and then put them into play the next time around.
My encouragement for you is simple: Don’t allow your stumbles and mistakes or feelings of inadequacy to push you to the bench.
Forget what lies behind– and press on towards that mission God has given you to raise your children to love God, love people, and impact this world for God’s glory. You have the most important job in the world, moms and dads– Keep Your head in the game!!
One of my great joys over the last few years has been to be able to put what God has taught me through the years of homeschooling and parenting my own children into His service as I get to now “coach” moms from all over the world through Teach Them Diligently 365 and Heart School all year long. Together, we are seeing moms take their positions on the court– and families are changing because of it.
God has allowed us to create an app where conversations are happening every single day– about strategies and ideas, encouragements, and just plain fun fellowship within community and special interest groups.
It would be a JOY to get to know you there!
If you’d like to dive deeper into how parenting and home education can be the most impactful mission you’ve ever set out on—and get great strategies to keep you in the game, download my new e-book Homeschool for the Heart. It’s only $5 in digital form (and you can get the audio book if you’d like as well!) I sincerely believe it will encourage your heart and give you great insight about how to “press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called [you] heavenward in Christ Jesus.” ♥️. Go to TeachThemDiligently.net/book to get your copy.