Letters to My Children – this is my prayer for you

 

Children, I want you to know that there has been a prayer for you running deep within my heart for the longest time. Since you were born I've been fixed on praying three simple things for your lives. Although there is much to intercede on your behalf, these three prayers will serve as a cover to protect and guide you in all things. So, as you read these prayers, my hope is that you will remember the times I prayed them for you and that they will become a deep mantra within your hearts that guide you toward the life you desire to live in the service of God. Nothing would make my heart jump higher than to know this has become reality for you.

“I pray that you would see this world with the eyes of Jesus…”

In this world you will have trouble. Most of it will stem from the conflict in your own hearts about who and whose you are. I want this to be clear; who you are is a result of how you see the world. As you grow up to live as citizens of this world it becomes increasingly important to remember that you are citizens of heaven also. If you choose to see this world with the eyes of Jesus, this distinction will become vivid and clear and help you greatly in your journey toward God. You will have perspective from heaven and be able to discern what is best not only for yourselves, but for the Kingdom of God and how it is breaking in around you. Seeing with Jesus's eyes will help you to value what God values and be willing participants in his work. This is critical for living a valuable and meaningful life.

“I pray that you would feel in this world with the heart of Jesus…”

The God who makes your heart beat longs to have it beat in rhythm with His. When your heart is in tune with God, you not only see what God sees, but feel what he feels as well. You will share with God a deep love for all creation; the world we live in and all the people in it no matter where they are from or how hard they are to love. Your heart will beat with compassion and that compassion as it moves you to act will serve as a challenge to a world that would rather cast out the unloved. Know that when you do this with your life you are singing the same song that God is singing about healing the world. You will find great joy and meaning in your life's calling if you long to feel with the heart of God. I warn you, though, that with joy there is also suffering… but take heart, for God has overcome the world.

“I pray that you would serve with the hands of Jesus…”

Our hands do many things. As you will learn as you grow, they can often be used for ill purposes. Many will use their hands for war and violence, or for hoarding things. They will use their hands to protect themselves and to tie heavy burdens upon others for their own profit. But you… I beg you to use your hands in the service of God. I want you to to claw your way to the front line of suffering and use your hands to feed the hungry, give to the poor, clothe the cold, hug the lonely, and heal the sick. Your hands are precious instruments, for they will be the tangible way for you to respond to seeing this world with Jesus's eyes and feeling with his heart. People will come to know the power of God through the way your hands serve them. Your life will be a blessing to those around you and God will be praised as a result. Use them as an instrument of God's peace that runs through your heart.

 

Letters to my children – Be Creative!

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There is a lesson that I have learned that I would like to impart to you. It is actually something you already do very well….being creative. So I hope this will be a reminder to stay young and never let the creative spark fade. At your age, you are in the cradle of life in it’s most special time, for the world hasn’t silenced the child in you and conformed you to the limitations of being an adult. Being creative is a way to swim against the tide of life and preserve your youth. So, guard the way you currently look at the world, for it is a gift that will benefit you if you hold onto it.

My advice: be creative! Don’t ever stop. Let curiosity and the delight of being a child guide your every impulse and endeavour…for if you do, I guarantee that you will experience the joy of living a full and pleasant life.

For me, my youth was filled with creativity. But as I grew older, I somehow separated the act of being an artist with the other things I did. It was as if the artist only came out when I was drawing and, over time, the child’s wonder and the creativity within became suppressed. My light faded and my mind forgot the way of the artist. It wasn’t until recently that I discovered again the joy of being an artist in everything I do. When we play the artist, we are naturally creative and our inner child emerges ready to explore in wonder the new possibilities of seeing something familiar as if for the first time. It’s being an artist in all that I do that has helped me unleash the creative potential to do things well…with passion and a voice! For the creative one is always asking and exploring new ways of seeing and being at work, at play, in school, in relationships, while cooking, in worship or whatever else you may do. The uncreative one becomes a lifeless cog in the wheel of life, turning meaninglessly in unfulfilment.

My children, the world has a way of driving you into being something less than human. Creativity has a way of inspiring you to be fully human as you imitate in your creativity the very God that made you with a child’s wonder.

So be creative in all you do. You are each gifted artists with a meaningful voice that the world needs to hear.