This morning, I attended a meeting of my cluster ministers, an important part of building collegial relationships and, quite honestly, staying sane. We began the day with a worship service, which was about excellence. At one point during the sermon, the leader looked at me and suddenly asked me what I viewed as my strength.
Now, almost any other time, I might have had several answers to that question – answers that I have considered over years of discernment and many hours of reflection. I am a preacher, teacher and lover of knowledge. I am a boat rocker. I am a paradigm shifter. I am a facilitator and guide.
But, none of those carefully constructed answers came to my mind. Before I could even begin to think about what I should say, I said, “Being a parent.”
Obviously, the events of the past week likely influenced my answer. My daughter Ashley and her husband Kevin made me a new grandfather of a lovely baby girl, Caitlin Elizabeth Stack. And my son Tyler got a richly deserved promotion, a just recognition of his hard work and dedication. It was a banner week for the Liebmann clan and I could not be prouder. So, I could be excused for having my kids at the forefront of my thinking.
But, I think my spontaneous answer revealed more than I might have suspected. I was blessed to have tremendous parents and I strove to be the best parent I could be. And clearly, many parenting skills come in handy in ministry, not to mention many pursuits in life.
- A good parent teaches, but is just an avid a learner.
- A good parent knows when to talk and when to listen.
- A good parent leads by example.
- A good parent is on the clock 24/7/365, but also knows how to have fun.
- A good parent provides opportunities for success and can turn any failure into a teaching moment.
- A good parent loves unconditionally.
- A good parent fosters creativity, rewards imagination, and welcomes a challenge.
So thanks Mom and Dad. Thanks Ashley and Tyler. Thanks to everyone who has helped hone my parenting skill set.
One thought on “Truth and Spontaneity”
Congratulations on your recent heap of blessings! What a beautiful little granddaughter!
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