How Well Do They REALLY Know You?

9:52 AMHeather

The media was abuzz with the news of Steve Jobs passing recently.  Everywhere I turned there was a story, bio,  or accolade to the legacy he left the world.  It was inspiring at first glance--to read comments on Facebook about how Steve Jobs changed the lives of countless people through the way they could use technology.  But, it was a tiny shred of information that I read in an online article that broke my heart.  Because as much as this innovator may have changed the world...there was a huge void he left behind.

Because I had read how intensely private a man he was, I was intrigued by an article about how he gave his biographer unprecedented access into his life.  Even in those last weeks when his wife politely refused countless visitors who wished to offer their last good-bye, this biographer was granted full access.   Quotes from Jobs about this access explained that he wanted people to understand why and how he did what he did.  But, it was one little line that stopped me in my tracks.

Jobs said that he also wanted the biographer to have such access so that his children could really know who he was.  In the years of his busy life building a technical empire, he had been away from his children a great deal.  He wanted his children to gain a better understanding of who he was through his biography.

Hmm.  For all the money and worldly success Jobs enjoyed, it would seem that he failed to connect to the greatest treasure God ever gave him.  What a sad but all too common commentary on our culture.  We strive to keep up with the Joneses, we work toward success and maybe fame, we run on the gerbil wheel of busy schedules.  Yet our very own children don't really know us.

How true is this in your life?  Do you really live out Psalm 127:3 which tells us children are a treasure, a reward, a heritage?  Perhaps you were raised by workaholics or emotionally distant parents.  It's all you know, and you are doing better than they did.  But, here's a truth to soak in.  We cannot change our heritage.  But, we can certainly change our legacy.  And, it's never too late.

INTENTIONAL challenge:  Last night, my daughter was very excited that I put her in charge of baking a cake for a Journey to Bethlehem cast party.   So, she puttered away in the kitchen, occasionally asking me a question as I sat nearby working on my lap top.  And, one of my sons needed help with his math facts.  The other son needed the lap top to finish his homework.   As I heard myself say for the third or fourth time--"Guys, just let me finish this one thing I need to work on," I realized that I was being like Steve Jobs.  I was putting other, less significant, things above my children's need for ME.  They each needed me in a different way, but they each had a need that I could have met.  No, I don't think they are scarred or will end up in therapy over this particular incident (perhaps over others).  But, the point is that I missed an opportunity to connect.  I missed an opportunity to validate them.  I missed an opportunity to convey to them that they are important and special to me.  Oh, that my children would really know who I am and be inspired by how I TRY to be the person I want them to be.  Lord, help me to be the mom these kids need!  Help me to get out my own way.  Help me to SEIZE these opportunities to connect to them while I still have their full attention.  Fill the gaps where I fail, and may they know their importance to YOU because I've shown them they are important to me.

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