McCoart Family Photo

I remember 30 years ago when I went to a psychologist as a requirement to enter the seminary. After the doctor finished his testing I was asked to give them a couple of weeks to process the information, and then come back for the results. I couldn’t wait to hear what the diocese’s chosen shrink thought of my psyche, and I went back with a very open mind and receptive spirit. I was impressed with how accurate their findings were in all areas of my life except one. When the doctor finished sharing his results he concluded by warning me that he thought it possible I had an unrealistic view of my parents! I remember thinking how odd it was for him to say such a thing. The doctor told me that he thought I wasn’t critical enough of my parents, who raised seven children all born within an eight-year period of time. The doctor shared that he hadn’t had such a nice childhood himself, and that it might do me some good to go back into my past and reexamine my childhood to see if I hadn’t possibly glossed over some negative aspects of my parents’ mode of parenting!

Whew. Even now 30 years later I am still stunned at the psychologist’s approach, and I am happy to tell you that I still think my parents walk on water. My father in heaven, my mother here on earth – still walk hovering slightly above the water! Sorry, that’s just the way I see it! We were what I would consider the real-world equivalent of The Brady Bunch, The Partridge Family, The Waltons and The Andy Griffith Show all rolled into one! I’m not suggesting my parents weren’t human, I’m just suggesting that they had a moral character which was commendable – to love and to serve in every aspect of their lives. I’m unaware of a single time in my parents’ lives when they were selfish or intended any harm. I honestly believe my parents’ every intention was to do good and to do no harm. They still amaze me.

As for me personally? I’d like to think that at this stage of my life, with Jesus as my Guide, my only life’s intention is to love and serve others, to encourage others, and to lead side-by-side with others so that we can all become the people God is calling us to be.

Do you know what your life’s intention is?




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