Stewardship of relationships

Parent and childFor I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord by doing what is right and just, so that the Lord will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.”             Gen. 18:19 (NIV)

Chapter         (NIV)

Audio              (4:59)

An area of stewardship that is often ignored or forgotten today is our responsibility within our family. If the Lord has allowed us the blessing of being a parent, we have a responsibility to that role. We also have a responsibility to our own parents while they are still living.

Medicine is notorious for being a profession that leads to neglect of family.

I personally know the pressures. When my children were young, there was a period of time when I was the only person in our rural town capable of performing cesarean sections. That responsibility to patients often conflicted with my responsibility to my family.

In the midst of that conflict, we must remember that there are certain relationships that only we can influence and we never know when the time we spend with a child or family member will greatly impact their life.

This point is vividly illustrated in a story told by Gordon McDonald in his book The Effective Father. The story is about James Boswell, a famous biographer of Samuel Johnson. Boswell treasured a special childhood memory of going fishing with his father. During that day, he learned several points of wisdom from his father that carried through his entire life.

Much later, someone looked up that special day in the diary that Boswell’s father kept. Here is the entry for that day: “Gone fishing today with my son; a day wasted.”

Boswell’s father thought the day was wasted while the son treasured the day for the rest of his life.

Remember that sometimes the value of our day is measured by our influence on those close to us rather than by visible accomplishments.

That’s being a good steward of relationships…

Prayer: Lord help me make the time for those who truly need me.

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