Friday, September 22, 2017

The Open Road

Post by: Elliott Holm

As I'm writing this blog posting, I'm on the cusp of some big changes in my life. They're just about the biggest changes anyone can experience in their lives, known as parenting. We're due to have our first child on December 27th. While this comes with a whirlwind of thoughts, worries, massive excitement, and so much hope, it reminded me of A big learning I've had for so many of these big steps.

I'm a 29-year-old, so I'm at that time where a lot of the typical big major changes in my life have already occurred (buying a house, getting married, etc.). But as all adults know, the changes in our lives never stop happening, and this helped me remember something that has been a guiding force for me during these changes.

While I'm about to take this big jump into parenthood, I've been doing something I almost always do with every big change, which is over-research, over-read, over-ask questions, and generally bother everyone else, soliciting their opinions and information about parenting. I've worked to authentically work parenting in to conversations with people in my life who have been parents, and have wisdom to share. Of course, this makes for some odd conversations when I manage to segue from a golfer's performance in the Master's, to how the handle bedtime and how to put an over-excited toddler down to sleep (Seriously, try this one with your spouse or with a friend, it's a stretch). Other people's opinions and information on parenting, buying a house, marriage, being pet owners, and so many more things have been what guided my decisions on what to do when faced with a difficult decision.

Whether or not we admit it, we all do this a lot. In my job, I'll watch someone else teach a lesson and spend so much time critiquing myself on all the things they do or say, and tell myself "I wish I could be more like them with their ability to...." Maybe this is just a millennial thing, but I know I can't be the only one who has done this at least once. I've spoken in blogs before about "stealing" techniques from other people and making them your own (teachers are the best at stealing techniques and pretending we invented them, trust me).

I do want to use this post, though, to reinforce a message we've been hearing at church for the last few months. Pastors Ken and Thomas have been putting in the extra effort lately to connect members of the church with each other (If you've exchanged phone numbers with other people in church, way-to-go)! What we need to remember, though, is to "use" these people. Obviously, I don't mean you should only use them for your own gain, but instead to "employ" them in your life. Your church family is so happy to be a part of your life, and people in general are always so excited to feel needed, and feel that they fill a gap in each other's lives. I did this recently, when I made the rounds, talking to parents in my church family who I know I can learn so much from, and I really have.

It doesn't matter how small or trivial your life-change is, your church family is going to be happy to have been a part of that change with you. And of course, after you've employed them, like any good employer would do, make sure you follow up with your church family and let them know how you're doing, and how they helped. You'll be very surprised with how much support you can find in your church family, when you find the strength (and it is strength, not weakness) to reach out to them.

Elliott has been attending BUMC since 2012 with his wife, Kyla. Since attending, he has worked with technology for services, as well as camera work on Easter and Christmas, while Kyla sings. He is a high school Gifted and Talented teacher at Wheat Ridge High School, and is in his 6th year of teaching. He lives in Arvada with his wife and two dogs.

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