"Prepare Your Child for the Path and Not the Path for Your Child"

Recently, Coach Brad McCoy (Colt’s dad) spoke at a local sports banquet in Austin. During his speech, he shed light on his and his wife’s philosophy on raising kids. Their philosophy, stated in one short statement, is that “you prepare the child for the path, not try to prepare the path for the child”. If all my parent sessions were to be combined, this one sentence sums up the key idea in them all. All too often however, this philosophy is played out backwards by well meaning, loving parents who believe their task is primarily to prepare the path for their children. Parents do have a huge role in planning for their kid’s future.  We must be careful however not to focus more on establishing plans for our kids- the right environments, the right opportunities – than on transforming hearts.  As a parent, we desire to protect our children and “defend their rights” and sometimes we need to.   But if we are not careful, we can readily  foster an entitled mentality, when what they really need to do is develop character and manage their attitudes, regardless of the circumstances. What happens on the inside will have far more influence on their future lives than the external things that tend to consume our energy and emotions as parents. The most important decisions we make in life really have to do with who we are and who our children are becoming! No one decides up front to walk down the wrong path. Instead the direction turns ever so slowly with each step –  or choice – made along the way....

A Model of Contentment in Colt McCoy

It was a seemingly routine hit – one that would have gone unnoticed except that it sent Colt McCoy to the sidelines, his throwing arm hanging limply at his side.  With the national championship on the line, we held our breath.  We had faithfully watched Colt lead the Longhorn football team to victory all season long.  We marveled at his steadfast leadership and took joy in his regular stand for Christ.  Watching a team of this caliber was fun.  Knowing the team was led by a quarterback who put his trust in the Lord, made it all the more exciting. “Colt couldn’t be injured”, we reasoned, “that just did not happen”. But it did, suddenly, and in an oddly non- dramatic fashion.  Colt may never understand how or why, but his words in the post game interview resonate as a powerful message with lasting impact for all of us.     “ I stand on the rock”, he explained, refusing to question the sovereignty of God in undoubtedly his most devastating moment in football, a game he had dedicated his life to.  To lead the team to a National Championship title had been his dream for years.  The game started out with intensity, the Longhorns on track to win.   It took a second to change the direction. Life isn’t easy!  Disappointment can invade a person’s heart and soul quickly and forcefully by unexpected events and circumstances.  Experiences such as loss of job or a dream, the death of a love one, or marital unfaithfulness, can quickly bring on despair.  Even day to day life, with its constant grind and unexpected obstacles,...