I repeated the scenario a few times just to see if it was a fluke - nope, definitely not. She knew what I was asking. And naturally with my overly active thoughts, I started wondering if there were other things that she could understand, and very quickly I became
If she is beginning to understand things, then she is beginning to think. And she's starting to make choices and soon enough will understand consequences - good or bad. And her thoughts and impressions of the world around her and the people around her will begin to form. And on and on it goes.
The immense intentional thought parenting requires frightens me because I haven't a clue where to begin. For years I have found myself looking at the surrounding world and thinking, "There has got to be something more. Something that we're just not getting." And so I've thought that about parenting. There's got to be something more. There has got to be a way to raise children in the church and yet not have them think that "Christian culture' is what Christianity is about. There has to be a way to grow your children up on Bible stories without them getting bored and un-enthralled with with the stories of God. There must be a way to raise your child in the world while teaching them how to not be of it. And I am convinced there is a way to teach a child the heart of God and not just the misunderstandings of acceptable and unacceptable behavior.
But I am at a loss as to what that all looks like, and yet the time is here. It would be such an injustice to Rori if we didn't take our parenting seriously - if we didn't give it a thought now while she's still learning how to think. To be intentional about all our interactions with her and all our responses to her sounds absolutely exhausting - especially when we don't have a grasp on what road to start down. Where do we begin knowing how to shape and guide a heart and soul? I haven't a clue, but I think I'm beginning to realize the reality of the old stories of mothers "burning the midnight oil in prayer."