Parents seem to always have little gems of wisdom to impart to their children at just the right moment. My husband's mother always says, "Don't forget!" as her children depart from her presence. It means, "Don't forget I love you", but was shortened to "Don't forget" so that her teens would know what she was saying without being embarrassed in front of their friends.
As we are entering into the world of preteen, I've been contemplating what I can say to our children that will have a lasting impact even when they are out of my presence. I want to impart some important words. If it's the last thing I say to them, what should it be?
My Dad always said the same words to me throughout junior high and high school. Every time he dropped me off at a dance, a friend's house, a music or sport practice or even for youth group, he'd say, "Remember who you are". At the time, I thought I knew what he meant. "Remember who you are". You are a member of our family. What you do and say and the choices you make reflect directly on our family. At least that's what my teen mind heard.
As I have matured in wisdom over the years (ha!), I've come to realize that I completely misunderstood what my Dad was trying to tell me. He wasn't admonishing me to keep the family name squeaky clean. He was reminding me to remember who I am in Christ. He was reminding me to keep my focus on what, or rather WHO, I stand for. To keep my eyes pinned on the One who made me and saved me and not to get caught up in what my friends were doing. Pretty good wisdom to impart to your child as they leave your protection.
So, here I sit, wondering what I should be saying to my kids each time they leave my reach. I don't have the words yet, but I'm sure they'll come. Until then, let me admonish you ... Remember who you are and Don't forget!