Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Have you ever noticed that some people don't know where they end and others begin?

They feel the need to take charge of your life and try to live it for you, or at the very least urge you to live it the way they would.

In-laws often get the bad rap for this, but I think many struggle with not knowing when to stay quiet, when to tone down the body language, when to let go.

As parents especially, we can struggle with over-protective love.

We see the train wreck coming if our children stay right in the middle of the tracks. We tell ourselves that it's really in their best interest that we speak up.

But isn't it really about us?

About our need for their lives to reflect our values, our desperate need to keep them from the pain of their choices.

But is it their pain or our own pain that we wrestle with?

If we don't see others or our children as their own, self-contained entities we'll continually cross out of the space that is ours and into the space that is theirs.

One parenting class I took referred to it as our "space bubble."

When we cross into their space bubble, in a sense we are tying their hands and keeping them from priceless treasure—learning from the error of their ways.

Lessons learned are like gold nuggets we accumulate across a lifetime.

When we save our kids from themselves, we steal their gold. And sadly, keep them on the very path we are trying to save them from.

Each day they get older the price gets higher.

Much better to release them into the hands of the One who yearns to deposit much gold into their (and our) lives.

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