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February 4, 2016

The More We Protect, the Less We Prepare

“Adversity introduces a man to himself.”

Few things hurt like watching our children struggle. We see them encountering any kind of pain at all, and a wave of protective power surges within us—it feels like everything in us wants to shield them forever.

Of course, this protection is obviously a huge part of parenting. But with each passing year, as our children hear more of life’s demand for maturity, we parents have to learn to restrain ourselves. We have to learn to prepare more, and protect less.

Why? Because safety and success do not offer the best life instruction. If we want to give our kids the best chance for future strength and maturity, we must let them taste the fruits of failure. We must allow them the dignity of digging out of their own holes.

Homework is supposed to be hard.

Responding to a friend’s insult is supposed to summon our courage.

Figuring out how to make more money, in order to buy that shiny new whatever, is supposed to take time, math, and effort.

If we want our kids to build muscle, we can’t lift their weights for them.

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