If you were giving life-affirming counsel to your children who were about to launch out on their own, in five words or less, what exactly would you want to tell them?
How would you let them know of your confidence in their ability to grow and learn? How would you state your thoughts so clearly that they would have no need to question your expectation that they would follow in your footsteps and continue to evolve in their sphere?
I really can’t imagine anything better than the two words, multiply and replenish.
But what exactly do we multiply? And once we know that, how do we replenish “it”?
From a parent’s perspective, one of the most important things I would want to encourage my children to multiply is them! More of them in this world would be a great thing to me! More of their goodness, and humor, more of their integrity and love. More of their unique way of seeing and doing things, and more of their desires to lift and to bless. Of course, I’d want more of their laughter and more of their enjoyment in the world around them and more joy in the fruit of their labors and talents they are cultivating.
Here is yet another way that being a parent is incredibly instructive. If as children of God we sometimes perceive our Father’s counsel and commands to us as something to fear or to be burdened by, using the lens of our own parenthood, much of our misperceptions can be corrected quickly.
If you wonder what the most creative being in the universe desires for you, why not take a moment and write out your desires for your children?
What would you counsel them to embrace?
What would you counsel them to avoid?
How would you encourage them to maintain their ability to chose?
What would you love to see them love about themselves?
What do you hope they will enjoy, embrace and experience while they are here?
in other words, how do you want to see them “multiply” everything they have been given?
And once you have a sense of what can be multiplied, what about the replenishing part? Is it good then, to restore ourselves after exertion? Is it acceptable to fill ourselves back up with hope after we have experienced some kind of fear?
Again, what would you counsel your own children to do?
Most of all, it seems to me that these two expansive and resplendent words illustrate our never-ending potential; that potential that we have to use faith to wrap our heads around while we have our mortal, limited vision.
What are your thoughts?
Today I hope you will consider your potential. I hope you will allow yourself to expand and “burst the fetters of your mind.”