Strange as it may seem, I believe part of the ability to dedicate your child to God springs from having a close relationship with her. The scriptures don’t tell us much about the short time Samuel lived with Hannah at home. I imagine Hannah treasured the time with Samuel and showered him with her love. I often wonder about the conversations they must have had each year when she visited him. What did she say to him about her love for him? What wisdom did she try to leave with him in those few days each year?
We are blessed with having our children live in our homes for several years. If you have been a parent for more than a few weeks, you already have a sense of how quickly the time with your child passes. As your child grows older, you feel a greater urgency to teach him everything you want him to know before he goes into the world. Unfortunately, this is also often the period of time when your child may want to shy away from what he considers a “mushy” conversation.
We have stumbled upon a great way to impart our feelings and thoughts in a way that seems to work well. When my daughter attended public school, I became the queen of the lunchbox note. Sometimes it was serious. At other times it was a cartoon, joke or scripture that applied to what was happening in her life. I rarely brought up the fact that I had put a note in her lunchbox. She rarely mentioned it either, but one day when I was cleaning, I noticed she had saved all of them.
Her father leaves notes on her pillow. Usually he is telling her how proud he is of something she has said or done. He writes about how he has seen her grown or asks her out on an outing. Now that she is older, they also text each other.
I love the idea of writing notes to her. I can only hope she can re-read them some day when they will mean even more to her. Hopefully, they will even help her when she is on her own and trying to make a difficult decision.
Notes allow you to communicate with your child in ways you might not be able to do in conversation. Your child can process the thoughts and emotions without worrying about being “embarrassed” or appearing “uncool”. So grab a pen and paper and write your child a note. I promise your notes will mean more to your child than you will probably ever realize.