August 12th, 2016

When Aaron and I were dating we had two couples in our lives that mentored us and helped us in our journey with the Lord and with each other.

They were probably a little bit younger than we are now, and each had young kids in their home. The husbands were monumental in Aaron’s life and the wives were monumental in my life. I remember that I would go to their homes at night after their kids were in bed and we would chat while they folded clothes.

Those nights were so wonderful to me and I didn’t care that we were sitting around laundry while chatting. When the kids were awake, I didn’t care that they were screaming. In fact, I loved their kids and their girls were actually in our wedding. Carrie & Amy both hold special places in my heart as landmarks in my Christian faith.

I’ll never forget one time what Amy’s husband, Kyle, told us. He said that when people love your kids, you love them more. At the time I didn’t truly get it. I knew that I loved their kids, and I knew that I loved them, but I didn’t truly understand the impact on their family.

Now I get it.

Having four kids myself, and having several people in my kids’ lives that love them, makes me so happy and so proud. My boys have countless men to look up to in their lives. Brett and Logan are two young men that have both been mentored by Aaron over the past few years, and they love my boys so well. For that I’m eternally grateful. Two men that love Jesus and pursue him in their lives are leaving a legacy for my boys. My boys look up to them and think they are the coolest people in the world. When they take the time to talk to them or wrestle with them they are joining us in our walk as parents.

My friend Meghan loves my Story-girl so well. It’s nothing for her to text me to see if Story can sleep over or go with her to visit her grandparents. I mean, why would I say no to that!?!?? Of course I love the break, but for me it’s way more than that. It’s one more person pouring into her life that loves Jesus passionately. Meghan pursues God in her life, and that will overflow into her love for Story. Meghan knows Story well and sees the same potential in her that I see. She sees a leader and a girl that will do big things. Recently Meghan took Story to her grandparents’ house and of course everyone loved on her. Her love bank was so full when she got home, and as a momma, I’m so grateful for them all for loving my girl.

As parents we need others investing in our kids, and here’s why: when Cayden turns sixteen and he all of a sudden thinks his parents are weird and don’t know anything, you know who he’s going to trust? Brett & Logan. When Story is in middle school and is over-the-top- dramatic (dear Lord help me b/c I think our drama level is high already), Meghan will be a voice she will listen to and trust. They have invested in them and care for them. This makes me so happy because I know that those men and women will be telling them the same things we are. We’re on the same team. The more people in our kids’ lives that they trust and that are telling them the same truths we are, the better.

Parents, when you invest in young adults’ lives, they in turn invest in your kids. It’s a win-win for everyone involved. I want to encourage you to look around you and see who you can bring into your family. Find someone you would want investing in your kids, and then start engaging them and investing in them. Have them at family dinners. Invite them into your family outings. Encourage them to spend holidays with you if they have no other family. Allow them to join your family.

It takes a village to raise kids, and single friends, you are monumental to my village. Thank you!