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Mormon Parenting: Why serendipity is better than control

Published: Thursday, Oct. 6 2011 6:22 p.m. MDT

The fact is that we control so very little, and that God controls all. His gifts are all around us, along with his opportunities and incredible beauties, and we just need the awareness and spiritual sensitivity to see them. We can cultivate this awareness, and we can ask him for it. As we do, we use our agency to take the spiritual initiative that allows God to bless us and inspire us and guide us. Guidance is infinitely more valuable and more worthy of our pursuit and quest than is control. And serendipity is the mind-set or paradigm that can get us to guidance.

Control can seem motivating because it appeals to our lust for power and dominion. But it is a dangerous kind of motivation because it is unbridled by humility and can lead to the worst kind of pride.

With a serendipity paradigm, we are motivated by our desire to discover and deliver God's will into our lives. We begin to see life as a great adventure where our challenge is not to control but to perceive and to understand. We become as interested in learning to "watch and pray" as we are in learning to "work and plan," and the two sets of skills complement and enhance each other.

Richard and Linda are the founders of Joyschools.com and New York Times No. 1 best-selling authors who lecture throughout the world. Visit them anytime at www.TheEyres.com or at www.valuesparenting.com. This article and the three that follow are based on Richard Eyre's semi-private book "The Three Deceivers," which is available on Amazon.com either on Kindle or as a paperback book.

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