On Sunday 10th March 2019, was youth Sunday in my church Reformed Church in Zambia. Youth Sunday is a time when the youths of the church ‘take over’ the church service. They take lead in worship, leading a prayer time, ushering, sharing testimonies on how God is working in their lives and one of the youths preaches. Growing up this was always a great experience. Whether it was reading the scripture or preaching, it was a change of pace from the ordinary worship experience week in and week out. It is from such experiences like this that many youths have discovered their talents and calling. I was impressed to see some parents happy that they have discovered and seen their children’s talents. I was surprised to hear from parent that they were surprised to see their child sing or recite a memory. This made me think that some parents they do not know that they have a responsibility to discover their child’s talent and nurture it. As parents we are given the privilege of discovering our children’s gifts and talents and to nurture their natural endowments. Note here that I am using the word discover. This means that the talent is already in the child. It is not something that we are putting in the child; it is something that God has already put in the child. God not only has created us, but that He has created us for a purpose and for us to fulfil that purpose he put in us innate strength and abilities. It is our responsibility as parents to bring out from our children what God has endowed in them. I see parents often want their children to do what they did when there were young themselves. They would want the child to play the sport they once played or take part in the activities they enjoyed. Our children are individuals born with different strengths and weaknesses. Our children are unique individuals, designed perfectly by God. They have their own set of passion and talents that will grow and eventually be a blessing to this world. This is why we should allow them to follow their passion. Unless our children find what makes them uniquely individuals, they will not be happy and living a life of fulfillment and purpose. It is always a good idea to let our children take the lead when it comes to discovering their God given talent and gifts. Let’s allow our child guide their own path of discovery. Our role is to be their coach or guide. If they do not choose the path we have pave, let it go. We should give them the room to explore their interest instead. We can only make suggestions based on what we are seeing and hearing from them. I know sometimes we think that our children are too young to have an interest. Even at a young age children demonstrate an inclination to certain experiences and activities over others. We need to just watch the way our children play to gain a better understanding of their preference through activities our children pick. We will notice a trend in our children’s interest and that should lead as to nurture their natural nuances. Our role as parents is to encourage our children’s budding interest to unearth the true talent and passion they hold inside. As parents we must provide our children with opportunities to grow and learn. We don’t need to force every activity under the sun on them. This means that we must be able to observe and know what our children like. At the same time provide an opportunity for them to experience it. If for instance our child expresses an interest in art or helping others provide them with opportunities to experience it. Our children have untapped potential in them. That potential awaits us to discover it and give them a word of encouragement and an opportunity to experience it. Our words of encouragement may give our children the courage necessary for them to take that first step in maximizing their potential.
Please let me repeat myself here, I am not taking about pressuring our children to do something that we want. I am talking about encouraging them to develop an interest that is already in them