Words can not express how much I love this boy. He amazes me and teaches me so much each day. Each of my children opens my eyes to a new way of seeing things. The latest lessons come from Logan after his first swim meet last week.
Logan loves swimming. He is happier in the water than most anywhere else, but this is the first year that he’s been part of an official swim team. It gives him a way to learn swimming techniques and a chance to try something new. He doesn’t even have to compete in the swim meets, but he wanted to try the first one last week.
Earlier in the week he learned the butterfly stroke. He mentioned in the car coming home that day how bad he was at it. We talked about how it would just take practice. He was just learning it, after all.
When we got to the meet on Thursday, the first event he was listed in was the butterfly of all things. Now, here is where the first of the lessons comes in.
Lesson One: Try something even if you’re not perfect at it.
I was not about to make him swim something he was not comfortable with in front of all those people. Doing anything before I am completely prepared and confident makes me seriously uncomfortable. I’ve had many a nightmare based on exactly this concept. However, not Logan. Instead, he said “Well, I’ll give it a shot.”
“For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7
Did he swim the butterfly perfectly? No, but he did it. He didn’t let fear of failure stop him. As a result, Logan walked away from the meet that night proud of himself for trying something new.
He didn’t finish first that night. In fact, he finished last. However, he was not discouraged. He had a new experience to learn from. Here is where the second of the lessons comes in.
Lesson Two: View challenges as a chance to grow.
Even though he finished last, he wants to do it again. With a smile on his face, his exact words were “Well, the good news is I have plenty of room for improvement!“
Do you see why I love this boy and have so much to learn from him?
When he is not perfect at something, he sees it as a chance for growth. It’s a challenge. An opportunity.
How else do we grow but by facing a new challenge?
“But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.” 2 Peter 3:18
As a friend recently said to me: Growth is evidence of life.
I’m so proud of Logan for viewing this particular challenge as a chance to grow. I love watching him grow and live boldly and without fear, which leads to the third of the lessons he taught me last week.
Lesson Three: Be confident in your support.
One reason Logan has no trouble trying something new is that he doesn’t really care what other people think. I mean that in a good way. He knows that his family loves and supports him as long as he is trying his best. That gives him confidence.
Before going down to swim, Logan said “Even if I come in last, it will be okay.” I assured him it would be. The only time my children disappoint me is when they have a bad attitude or they are lazy. My children know that my husband and I are always proud of them when they do their best, regardless of the outcome.
Doesn’t our heavenly Father feel the same way about us?
In the parable of the talents in Matthew 25, the only servant that God is not pleased with is the one who was too afraid to do anything, the one who hid his talent in the ground. (Matthew 25:25)
We shouldn’t let fear of failure or fear of what others think keep us from using our talents.
In John 12:42-43 the Bible speaks of those who believed in Jesus but were afraid to act upon their belief for fear of what others would think of them.
“for they loved the approval of men rather than the approval of God.” John 12:43
Logan wasn’t worried about what the people in the stands thought of him. He knew that their approval didn’t matter. He would be loved and approved of by his family no matter what.
That’s what God wants of His children.
When we feel confident in God’s love and live only to please Him, it frees us to cast aside fear and thus to grow.
“And you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 8:32
And how about a piece of pizza?
When Logan was done swimming for the night, he walked back up to where I was sitting. I smiled at him, gave him a hug, and told him I was proud of him. Then I bought him a piece of pizza. You’ve never seen such a happy boy.
My aim this week is to apply these lessons from Logan.
I want to accept a challenge as a chance to grow, confident in God’s approval, even if the outcome is not perfect.
When I live boldly and without fear, my heavenly Father will be there waiting and smiling when I finish my race.
I want to hear Him say “Well done, good and faithful servant.” (Matthew 25:21)
At that point, it won’t matter what anyone else is saying.
I’ll have the love of my Father and my pizza. What else could I possibly need?
“But we are not of those who shrink back to destruction, but of those who have faith to the preserving of the soul.” Hebrews 10:39