Today. Our kids have so much pressure. 

Because there’s so much available to them, so much sooner. When I was a kid Madonna was the envelope pusher. But now things are even more available, and accessible, and “like a Virgin” is tame tame stuff compared to the monsters that hide across the wires of the Internet. The physiology  and awareness of the human teenage body is normal, but the images of perverse sexuality over the web is tainting the view of what should something beautiful, and sacred. 

Our kids are faced with this. Right now. 

Of course There are drugs and alcohol, and that rush to feel so much, or not feel enough.

Our kids are faced with this. Right now. 

 The need to fill big empty spots are even greater, because we don’t connect like we used to. We don’t talk to each other. 

At Restaurants we pass our toddlers Smart Phones because God forbid they make a noise or eat a crayon. God forbid they act like children. 

Video games don’t even come in a little box we can only plug into our TV’s, they are now accessible on phones and there are so many. We drive in cars and they don’t look up. They look down the entire time. 

Adults are playing video games for hours…losing sleep over something that is not real. And it will only get worse- because we are allowing them to think that’s normal. 

And our kids will be faced with that as a possibility of what adulthood is. 

There is so much pressure. To get better grades. To be better at a sport than your best friend. To be more talented. More funny. More than everyone else.  To be the one kid who won’t accumulate the most student loans, and expecting a job right out of school. 

And if the other end of the spectrum is an adulthood of lack of motivation. To expect parents to float us. To just not have a plan. 

And they are missing out on living. 

Little screens take so much time. Little interaction. And little ways  we are allowing our kids to become robots and lose sight of what it’s like to be a person.

And the need to be perfect. To be good enough. And we don’t really talk to them, be present to them. And suddenly the issues that come with ignoring or missing out on their present, makes us lose sight of who they’ve become. 

I recently read an article about “free-range” parenting and I have to say I disagreed with it on so many counts…my kids aren’t chickens. They are humans who deserve our protection and attention. Maybe it’s because children I love have been victims of horrible crimes against them, and while I’m told stranger danger is rare- I am all too aware that the real danger are the people I already know around my kids. So I stay guarded, and I parent and protect. While learning every day how to let go in way that still offers them the safety net of knowing no matter what, right now, they have the right to be protected. (Disclaimer: my husband will not agree with this statement as he thinks I’m not letting go enough…but whatever I’m trying.)

But the battle is raging. And the world I am against right now is immediate and instantaneous response. It is raising a nation of entitled. And we, as a family, are going against it. Fighting it…I want to teach my children things that are more important than anything the “Google” can teach them…

To have a conversation. 

To make eye contact. 

To feel empathy. 

To give love and receive love. 

To play. Loud and wildly. 

To explore and be outside. 

To have many interests. 

To apologize sincerely. 

To not be desensitized. But to be alive and engaged. 

To try new things. 

To fear God, and to need God. 

To look up. 

To feel the wind, and taste fresh air. To listen to water rushing. And to look around. 

At the world. At each other. 

The Right Now. 

Today we drove the Redwood highway…it is one of the most beautiful drives I have been on. We stopped above some crystal blue water and sat under the sun. And we didn’t even really talk. We all just sat and enjoyed the beauty of this world in the right now. 

The last few days we have spent a lot of time in the presence of each other, and I have thought a lot about the battle when the real world comes back into play next week and I have to battle against all the things that steal from my beautiful things. 

But but…in a world that is way too fast for us, hasn’t stolen from the bond and faith we have in each other. 

And I refuse to allow my own insecurities, my own guilt over not providing more, my own battles to take from the sanctity of my family.

So right there I prayed behind them.

 And when we all got back in our car, we felt rejuvenated from looking around. 

At the right now. 

The battle lines have been drawn, but I believe in us. 

I believe that God is right here. With us. In the right now.