- They were authentic. What they were at church we saw at home. Never anything different! I can't emphasize what that did for me as I watched them. It taught me that the Christian life can be real, and it is not an act.
- They came to my ball games and track meets. This seems like a no-brainer, but I had friends in high school who NEVER had their dad come to a game. Imagine what that communicates!
- They encouraged me toward the ministry without pushing it. They had such a big part in my preparation for ministry, and yet I never felt like I was "mama-called" and "daddy-sent." They let God work, and rejoiced when He did.
- They set an example of service to their church (they still do). My parents have never been recognized leaders of the church (like an elder, or deacon). And yet, they have always served in amazing ways. My mom has almost always taught children's Sunday School classes. My dad is leading a Bible study for adults with special needs (I have a sister who is mentally handicapped, who is in this category). They are servants, and have always avoided recognition.
- They knew when to let go and let me grow up. I guess I didn't realize that until I had kids. I can imagine that it is hard to let them move away. I can imagine that you would want to hang on as long as possible. You invest 18 years in their lives, and then they are not in the home anymore. Yet, my parents let me do this. It's amazing that thier influence may be stronger on me now more than ever.
Thank you God, for giving me a godly parents. May I have the same kind of influence on my kids!