Our oldest son loved planes and the concept of flight from his earliest memories. His choice of books including these 1st-2nd grade readers reflected it.
I read from Richard Scary’s Best Word Book Ever to this son for hours when I was on bed-rest carrying twins, but it was the page on airplanes that fired up his imagination in a big way!
The first time I stooped down beside our son and pointed up into the sky to announce the approach of a two-seater airplane, I knew there was a connection made. I could feel his excitement!
School work for this son was filled with all things planes, pilots, fighter jets, rockets, missiles, and astronauts.
What continued through the years was a deepening interest in flight in general, but also in astronomy, the sciences, and engineering.
I thought little of what it might mean for him (or for me) to actually fly one day! It was too far down the road.
You’ve heard it said, “Be careful what tastes and affections you develop in your children.” It is so true! We as parents must deal with the eventualities of our choices. We are the gate-keepers.
While books seem innocent at the younger ages (and the summer reading programs at the library sound appealing), I would caution all parents to be completely aware of the content of anything from your local library or a neighbor’s home, for that matter. I still feel sick that a very dear friend’s son was sucked into porn at the age of 8 (really!) via books which were verbally graphic which caused him to seek it out.
Most of the garbage out there can take a young man off track from the very thing he really has a passion for!
I recommend being proactive and providing your own great books.
Read-aloud often! Children will ask for more if a book is well-chosen. Love of reading is usually developed early and will be profitable in using up lots of trouble-making free-time. Start collecting now and tailor your purchases to winsomely draw your child into exciting, wholesome wonderment. We avoided fantasy in the younger years for a number of reasons, preferring autobiographies, living history, character-building, and nature stories.
We wanted our boys to take dominion, to become men ‘of steel and of velvet’, and yet to become men of good character and honor.
It has been exciting to see how our 20-year-old son has retained a love of reading (including the Bible), and his tastes definitely continue to reflect that early diet of aviation, science, history, and current events.
So Mothers, with the help of your husbands, intentionally guide your son in his young years to his interests, committing them to the Lord, and help your son to guard his heart until he takes his faith seriously and governs himself. This is not done overnight.
Later, you must gradually open your hand to hold him more and more loosely. Your son can and will fly upon wings like an eagle. If held onto too tightly, he will either resent and despise you or become weak and unable to lead his own family someday (or both). I have had to walk these last years on my knees and resign my ideas as the Lord has revealed His!
Now our son has finished his instrument rating and is close to obtaining his commercial hours and earning his college degree from home. While I still have anxious moments (some days he is flies in the clouds, following only the instruments and tower contact), he is remaining grounded in the Word, and that’s all that matters.
What a joy it is to be his mother!
This song played on the radio the morning he soloed. He was 16. It was a very special day: 7-07-2007!
“I pray that God will fill your heart with dreams,
And that faith gives you the courage
To dare to do great things.
I’m here for you whatever this life brings.
So let my love give you roots
And help you find your wings.
“It’s not living if you don’t reach for the sky
I’ll have tears as you take off
But I’ll cheer you as you fly
Update: Our son is now 25 and is the captain of an Emberaer 170/175, flying for a regional airline.
“So let my love give you roots and help you find your wings.” – Mark Harris
“When I was a boy in my father’s house, still tender, and an only child of my mother, he taught me and said, “Lay hold of my words with all your heart; keep my commands and you will live. Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or swerve from them. Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you.” ~Proverbs 1: 3-6
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Thanks for reading!