Saturday, February 15, 2014

Self~Sacrificing Parents

This is the fifth post by my mother-in-law about her upbringing in which her parents raised six children who grew up to walk in Truth ~

In looking back, I can clearly see how my parents laid down their lives for us, my Dad being the strong, quiet leader that he was.  I remember when we were adolescents and entering a world of new struggles, Daddy would have to talk with us seriously upon occasion when we went astray.  

These talks usually happened in my parents' bedroom, with the three of us {Dad, Mom, and the guilty party} sitting on or around the big bed.  We kids came to call these talks "bedrooms sessions", where Dad did most of the talking, and Mom would sit quietly by {Was she praying?  Very possibly}.  As I only remember Daddy talking, it makes me wonder if Mom ever spoke on those occasions.  But I do remember her remarking after one lengthy session {I want to say 2-3+ hours?} how Daddy was like a dishrag after it was all over, and he would just lay on the bed, exhausted.  It must have taken a lot out of him, and his youngest didn't leave the nest til he was 62!

Dad and Mom made sure we kids had transportation to the things that mattered: young people's meetings at church, an overnight with a Christian friend, Bible quizzing competitions, sports activities at the Christian schools we attended, etc.  When we lived in a town next to the one our church was in, the church activities required a bit of a drive for them.  I never heard them complain.

They also made sure to encourage us in our giftings.  I loved tinkering around on a piano whenever I got near one; but it wasn't until I was a junior in high school that I finally got lessons.  A very big memory for me is when Daddy surprised the family {mainly me and Mom, who also played} with the purchase of a piano for me to take lessons, at age 16.  

He sat me down on the bench and said, "Now Barbie-girl, I want you someday to be able to sit down her and play anything you want to."  Thanks to their sacrifice of money and time spent taking me to lessons, I can play anything I want to.  Fortunately, I love worship/church music best, and my teacher taught me with that in mind.  I have been a church pianist at 5 different churches, and loved all of it.

In the area of working with us individually, Dad took our personalities into account, even in his discipline of us.  Child number five, a girl, was a very sensitive little thing, apparently.  In any case, Daddy didn't seem to punish her as much as he had the rest of us.  Or so we thought.  We must have broached the subject with him, because we recall him saying that he didn't need to punish her very much; he only had to look at her and she cried in repentance.  A quiet model lesson to us kids of being a good parent.

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, 
that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
Romans 12:1