The Lesson I Learned (Most Recently) From My 8 Year Old Son

Click this link to listen here: Podcast episode 1

This is an audio version of my blog today.  It is my first endeavor into podcasting.  I will give it my best go, because like the top of stephentknox.com says, “It doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be.”

Recently my son, Brady, wanted to sing in church.  Now, this was not the first time he has sung in church before, and he has done a great job.  The fearlessness of many children (especially Brady) is awesome.  If you have not watched the videos posted with this, it is time to do so now.  To view the video click on the picture or “Brady Pass It On” under the picture below now.

Brady Pass It On

Now that you have seen the video, you have a pretty good idea of how proud I am of Brady.  I still get teary eyed when I watch it.  There are several lessons that are in that short video.

  1. Perseverance.  It would have been easy for Brady to crawl up in shell and stay seated.  He did not do it.  In fact he had no thought of doing that.  He wanted to go back up there right away.  He never said quit.
  2. Acceptance.  He did not place any blame.  Brady could have very easily blamed the piano player for continuing to play.  He could have blamed his parents for not letting him practice enough.  He could have blamed me for not prepping him for what to do if something went wrong.  He could have blamed everyone present for not ‘helping him out’.  He did not blame anyone.  He knew that he knew the words, he just started singing the wrong verse and couldn’t figure out how to get back on track.  He was not interested in blame, he just wanted to get back up there and do it again.
  3. Fearlessness.  You may not see it in this video, but he was not nervous to stand up and sing in church.  I love the fact that he is willing to put himself out there.  Even after his first attempt, he was still fearless.

Those are all great lessons that I could have learned from this experience, and I did.  However, the lesson I really learned is how to deal with the failure of my son.  I cannot tell you how much I wanted to keep him from going back up there.  I was so worried about him messing up again!  I wanted to protect him from further failure so much, that I almost taught him it was acceptable to quit.

It is our tendency as a parent, or any kind of leader for that matter, to protect those that are in our charge.  We would advise anyone that asked us that after a failure it is important to go back at it.  Get back up on that horse!  In the heat of the moment though, we want to protect them, give them a hug, tell them it’s okay, everyone messes up.  That is in fact what I did.  When he told me that he was going back up there, I told him, “I don’t know if that’s a good idea, Buddy.”  I told him that he could sing it again another week.  THAT WAS NOT ACCEPTABLE to him though.  He informed me, “I AM going back up there and singing it again.  I already told Bro. Phil I was.”

I reluctantly said, “Uhhh, ok.”  Looking back, I don’t think it would have mattered if I would have continued to say no.  He was determined!  I know now that no matter how badly I want to protect my kids and other people who are in my charge, I have to refrain from trying to protect them from MY fears.  Sometimes it is best to sit back, and let them do what they know is best.

Have you ever had to hold back from over protecting someone you lead?  If so, tell me about it in the comments.

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