Parenting a pre-teen is far less physically exhausting, but it is mentally exhausting.
As he challenges me continually (and generally respectfully) on why certain things have to happen a particular way, I found myself explaining to him (again) that when he is given a task, I expect him to finish it properly before moving on. As he stood there and stubbornly asked me ‘why’ it mattered, I reminded him that I am not raising a boy to live as he pleases, I am raising a man who will be respected and responsible.
“I see in you (ICNU) someone who knows how to work hard and has incredible creativity, when a boss hands you a task, he will need to see not only your creativity, but your ability to finish a job.”
The art of ICNU conversations is not only for 12 year old boys. An ICNU conversation is an opportunity to encourage and challenge a person into being or doing what God has intended for them. ICNU conversations are essential for us to have with those around us. Whether they be our children, our spouses or those we are doing life alongside professionally, in ministry or otherwise. They are the type of conversation that allows us to give permission away, so that someone can see a different path or future for themselves.
They are also the types of conversations that, if we let them, can help us reflect on who God is calling us to be. It is easy to dismiss the casual compliments of other’s, but I wonder, if we took time to observe, reflect and talk with others about what they see in us, would we make plans for a different future?
What is it that other’s most often see in you?
Is it the kind of compassion that shows kindness, caring and a willingness to help another person?
Is it the ability to keep your eye on the big picture. To work through challenges you face with resilience?
Are you able to maintain complicated relationships with empathy?
Can you have fun, be curious about the world and share that with others?
I see these common characteristics in wonderful foster parents.
Compassion, Resilience, Empathy, Fun and Curiosity.
Foster parents are able to keep the big picture in mind of raising adults to be successful members of our community, while understanding that they may never see them through all the years of childhood.
If others see in you the ability to provide a stable, loving and life giving home to a child in need, what’s stopping you from taking the next step in your foster care journey?
Louise Pekan - ARK W.A. State Manger