My sons were near opposites growing up. Barnabas could sit in front of a computer for hours while Jacob could not sit still for more than five minutes. Dean and I often found tension between monitoring Barn’s time on the computer and finding new ways to keep Jake quiet (we even began paying him!). What we saw as annoyances in the moment became our sons’ causes for success; Barn is a web designer and Jake is a pastor.
Their talents in those areas came early, but we did not recognize them. This made me wonder: how are we, as parents, developing and helping to enhance our children’s talents if these talents are hard to spot? Our children may have talents that we never had and thus could be easily misunderstood when they emerge. We can help develop these talents by embracing our children’s differences and celebrating them. This will develop a positive foundation should these differences develop into talents that fuel life-long passions.