It won’t be a flawless, straight-line path to mastery, and that’s alright – it never is. That’s the reality of the path we take toward excellence in any area. If you need some encouragement in this area, dad, then maybe realizing that you’ve embraced the process before with positive results might help.
Think back for a second. Do you remember when your son took his first steps? If you’re like me, it may be a foggy, distant memory that you have to work hard to recall. Remember the wobbling, the leaning, the staggering? Remember the crashing, re-setting, and trying again? It was almost like you could see your son figuring it out, little by little, with each new attempt. You cheered his improvement and kept encouraging him to try again. Maybe it took a few days, or a few weeks, but before long he got it, and you were one proud papa.
It was a process no different than developing these talents, or any other ability in your boy. Just like he was back then, your son is learning how to walk in the world, how to move forward on this journey from where he is now toward the potential of who he can become. He doesn’t know what it takes; that’s why you’re here. He will undoubtedly experience some wobbling, some staggering, and some crashing.
When he crashed as a baby, you didn’t judge him. You didn’t say, “This kid stinks! He just doesn’t have what it takes.” You knew he could learn to walk – you trusted and believed in that fact. He just needed time to learn, practice, and improve. You picked him up, dusted him off, and set out to help him get better, one step at a time. You led him until he was able to walk on his own.
That’s the goal here, too. In this world of immediate judgment, it’s easy for any one of us to look at our son in an area of weakness and say, “This kid stinks! He just doesn’t have what it takes.” Instead, we have to take the same approach we did when he was learning to walk.
First, we need to believe that our sons can do it, and that what they really need is time to learn, practice, and improve. Then, like we did back then, we need to pick our boys up, dust them off, and set out to help them get better, one step at a time. We’ve got to lead our boys, on the athletic field and in life, until they are able to walk on their own.