For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven. A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest. A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build up. A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance. A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones. A time to embrace and a time to turn away. A time to search and a time to quit searching. A time to keep and a time to throw away. A time to tear and a time to mend. A time to be quiet and a time to speak. A time to love and a time to hate. A time for war and a time for peace.
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 NLT
We must all know that and understand the differences in the seasons as we encounter them. Life is filled with choices. Every second of every minute, there are choices. Just as King David’s son said, “the greater my wisdom (of the world), the greater my grief”. As I become more aware of people, their hearts and this fallen world, the greater my sorrow however I will not allow sorrow to overtake me. There are some battles and wars I must fight. As a parent, my job is train my children up and that alone can be difficult. I must always remember let my no be no and let my yes be yes because they can give me a look that makes my heart melt.
To that same vain, I have to know when to fight for them because the battle is mine and not theirs. Example, I will not allow them to disrespect adults but I also will not allow adults to disrespect or manipulate them. I will always stand up for my children when their “giant” is an adult. And I will wage war against any adult who degrades them, talks down to them, tries to take advantage of them or overall tries to harm them in any kind of way. I tell the kids all the time, let me know what happened, tell me the truth (even if wrong) then I will determine what to do next. Sometimes there are consequences for them even when I have to deal with the adult. But other times, the adult is wrong and way out of line and I will quickly tap my children out and I will get in the ring. I continue to pray about my seasons and knowing when to speak or say nothing and sit silent or silently keep it moving. I came into this year chanting and reminding the kids, I am blessed, they are blesssed and those around us are blessed. That alone bring attacks and when the attack is on my children, I attack back, without hesitation. I’ll allow myself to be mistreated at times but my children, no sir, no ma’am.
In our lives, God has the final say so we must fear Him, follow His instructions and find joy in Him daily. As I trust God, I continue to desire to live my best days but some days are harder than others. There are some people who desire the blessings from being around us yet have no appreciation for us. Every one will not appreciate wise counsel, yet plant the seeds of wisdom anyway. Everyone will not acknowledge our hard work but we must work hard anyway. And in my wisdom, I can say now that it’s important to know when to stand your ground and fight and when it’s time to walk away (from a situation, a person, an environment…whatever is not good for you). What one person does appreciate in us, another person will. Where one person sees nothing but weakness, another person sees strength while the best person will see both and push us to be our very best. As a Coach, I always lead my players from their strengths and worked them hard in their areas of improvement. And ultimately, I put them in the game knowing that we put the work in. I had to trust them and allow them to grow. Even if they messed up, I trusted them and built teams that trusted each other. Many male coaches disagreed with my philosophy but there is not one kid that played for me that didn’t improve. And many times, grew and improved significantly (on and off the court). I always hit the court to win. Additionally, I always hit the court to win as a team. It wasn’t equal playing time because it’s not equal skill set but equal effort guaranteed playing time for all of my boys.
Everyone will not have my approach to coaching. Everyone will not share my approach to life and that’s okay however I must be selective with who we allow in our lives. Everyone is not meant to be in our village so we must choose wisely. In life, we should be progressing and anyone or anything hindering our relationship with God, harming us (mentally or physically), trying to take advantage of us or serving as a barrier between us and our purpose, must go. As we go through these seasons, some good, some great, some not so good and some devastating, we must seek God for wisdom and believe that all things are working for our good. As He reveals to us, we must follow according. When He shows us who someone is, we must believe that’s who they are especially when it’s a pattern of behavior.
Recently, I faced a giant for my son but in reflection, I knew how the end would be so why did I allow it to happen. Because my son wanted to participate even though instinctively other parents we knew tapped out. I still praise God through it all. Even in the midst of a storm, there are blessings. Fortunately, my son still has made some valuable relationships with other young men who I believe will be in his life for years to come. And I have relationships with the parents who will also be around for years to come. My son and some others have also learned that being in a leadership role, doesn’t make the person a leader they need to follow especially when they are not growing. I’m thankful that they are learning this young. All things really are working for our good.
I modeled the right actions in the beginning. Praise God for progress.🙌🏾 I communicated openly, leaned into my discomfort, communicated more but didn’t hit the exit button as soon as I saw there were no real changes. Alot of talk, but no action. I instead enabled the person by putting my own health on the back burner trying to be the glue and fix what was broken for my son and the other kids. I am slowly but surely learning that I am not always meant to jump in and help. When the responsibility doesn’t fall with me, I have to stop taking over. Instead, I need to observe, give feedback as necessary then ultimately make a decision when there’s limited or no meaningful progress.
It’s time to quit taking on stuff that doesn’t belong to us. I am bad at that. Parents, do not allow anyone to dim the light that sparkles in your child’s eyes. Better yet, people, let’s make a commitment to stop allowing others to dim our lights when we know God placed it there for a reason. We know better so it’s time to do better.
Stay focused and stay encouraged. May God’s peace and grace be with you as we keep pressing forward.