When tragedy strikes, your life changes. But what kind of changes do you make? Are there changes you should make beforehand? Life and time become precious.
The last few weeks have been tough on our family particularly my sister who lost her husband.
This past weekend we were able to get away as a family and just have fun. It was great to make memories, play games and talk. We took pictures and just had fun.
Looking back I have been learning a lot about what kind of legacy I wanted to leave behind and how I should live my life differently. The passing away of someone close to you changes you, and it should.
There are some things that I want do everyday or on a regular basis to leave my family better.
Here are several things that I have learned.
- Take Pictures. Take LOTS of them. I know maybe you are like me and roll your eyes every time your wife or spouse tells you to smile because they are taking a picture. It can get redundant. But looking back at recent events, you cannot have enough photos. Take them of your kids, with your kids, with your spouse, with family and friends. Looking back, you will always wish that you had more of them.
- Make memories. I will be honest, I am awful at this. Somewhat due to having a crazy schedule, but also I think because I not super creative and love to chill. But I need to be more intentional to make memories. What are some tips that you have? Don’t make “memories” just so that you can take a creative selfie or family picture. Make memories for the sake of spending quality time together.
- Spend time with your children. If you have children, try to spend at time with them every day. I know that there are many of you who travel for a living. Is there a way that you can Skype or talk to them on the phone? Or just intentionally spending more time with them on the weekend when you are at home. This could also mean sacrificing some responsibilities for your job and putting your family first. Date your children, let them know that they are loved and special to you.
- Spend time with your spouse. This is something that I want to be even more intentional with. It can be hard having 2 little ones around the house and both of us working. Often times, nighttime is the best time to get work done (this blog and her office work). But I want to be more intentional. The trick is to learn how to do things that are inexpensive and creative. Find a concert or park nearby. Just look for ways to get away and just be a couple. Go on vacation, just the two of you, NO CHILDREN. Our rule of thumb as our children grow older is 1 vacation with children and at least 1 with just my wife and I.
- Tell your spouse you love them. They should know without a shadow of doubt that you love them. I recommend saying those words MANY times a day and showing them. Kiss and flirt with your spouse a lot. Keep the romance going.
- Love on your kids. This does not mean that you give them everything they want. But give them kisses (when they are teenagers they will love it even more, especially when you do it in front of their friends!). All kidding aside, give them lots of hugs, kisses and attention. One of the first things I did after hearing of Patrick’s death, I grabbed my two boys and held them tightly as I kissed on their squishy, soft cheeks. I Love my boys and their laughter. Every night I give them both kisses before they go to bed. My oldest has been asking for extra after I put him to bed. He says “kiss?” “kiss?” as he wants another kiss and to give me one as well. Melts me every time.
Give them your time and attention. It is more valuable than things. Tell them you love them multiple times a day.Give your children your time, it is more valuable than things. Click To Tweet
- Go to bed at peace. Strive to always go to bed at peace with your spouse and family. Let nothing come between. I heard advice from one couple that said, “always go to bed holding hands because you cannot hold hands and be angry.” I like to put kissing before bedtime, plus it is a great thing to help build romance. You cannot kiss and be angry.
These are just a few things that I have been learning.
What are your some things you have learned?
What are some practical tips for some of these?
Love to hear your thoughts!
Excellent thoughts Jeremy. Our family has been making the extra effort to make memories over the past few years. It has been an incredibly busy time for us, and the days fly by. Thus, the pictures and family memories are especially meaningful, because they are an awesome reminder of how much fun and joy we are able to have together, even in the midst of the hustle-and-bustle of life.
I’d add, keep a since of humor. Many family challenges and disagreements, simply aren’t worth stressing over.
Such great wisdom in this post!
Dear man your teachings is great to thebody of christ.of and encouragement of the word ofGOD.
Dear man ofGOD,IAM BLESSED With your posts.of encouragement of the word ofGOD.
Thank you Jeremiah for your encouragement! Praying for you and other believers over in Kenya. May God bless you!