It was so fun to share this with the kids this year. I loved how they cheered wholeheartedly when our resident country competed. When a skier had a bad wreck they were super disappointed for our friend who comes out of that country. They cheered along patriotically for the US for as J said, "that's our people mom, it's where I come from you know." However, they also cheered along for whichever other athlete caught their attention regardless of their nationality. I loved teaching a bit of history and geography and social studies while we watched and various stories were shared in the broadcast and through the opening and closing ceremonies. I also loved hearing the kids dream, and dream big! I didn't tell them that most athletes for the sports they would like to be in have years experience already and my kids would be far behind starting just now. I didn't tell them that the percentage of people who play those sports and who actually go to the Olympics is miniscule, or that those who medal is even smaller. I also didn't tell them they'd get to be in the Olympics. I want to encourage them to dream and to dream big. However, I don't want to build them up and tell them falsehoods about who they really are either. I'm not saying I couldn't have an Olympian...or 2 even. I don't want them to expect that though. There's a fine line in our age of entitlement between dreaming big and expecting big. I want my kids to dream huge-to not let anything limit that. For God tells us that nothing is impossible for Him for his purposes. If he has a plan and purpose for J and that includes him being an Olympic ski jumper then that's what will come to be! However, expecting that just because he wants to do that, he can and will be good at it, are 2 different things.
So now that the Olympics are over I miss our evenings dreaming together. I think for me, it points a bit toward the future world as-it-will-be that Jesus is remaking for all of eternity. That stirs a deep longing in my heart! In the meantime though, I will keep encouraging the kids to dream. I may sign them up for a new sport or activity if they really want to try it. We will keep talking about the lessons we learned as we watched people overcome adversity, or give silly disrespectful rants that weren't well thought through. And we will all keep praying for God to continue to bring his kingdom more and more to earth-especially in our little corner where we are praying desperately for more light! And I'll have to turn the BBC on from time to time as I grew quite attached to some of the correspondents...I'll miss their accents too much otherwise! So, as they say at the end of the broadcasts "the games will live on in our hearts and in our memories." Here's to a great Olympics and even greater time with my family because of it!