Have We Lived Today?

I had a good chat with my brother yesterday. Both of us started our family at pretty young age. I got married at 24, my husband 25, whereas for him he got married at 25, I suppose. Now he’s 32 and his sons are 2.5 and 4. My husband and I are both 35 and 34, and our kids are going-9, 6 and 2.

The problem with starting a family at young age is, our financial security wasn’t there. It could be hard when there are things we couldn’t give our children and holiday trip wasn’t in the family agenda.

He started sharing about how his friends are working their butts off to earn more money for their future retirement, and some felt my brother was not striving enough.

As much as we wish to accumulate wealth for future, do not forget we have today to live. A lot of fathers around us, forget they have young kids to love and bond today, as they focus on the kids' college funds and early retirement. When they are old and the kids are grown, they realized they just dont have that connection and bonding.”, we both discussed.

I told him to take our parents as his source of hope and encouragement. Our parents started their family at such a young age, and dad couldn’t even afford milk for me when I was a baby. It was my aunt and two grandmothers that lent a hand to him. There were days that they couldn’t even afford a proper meal for us, that mom only cooked soup with salt and a piece of chicken for all of us to eat. There were also not just one, but a few seasons, that dad’s business failed or he got cheated by his partners.

If we could go back to the time when I was 5 and he was 3, and asked mom and dad, if they could imagine one day, they would be able to afford 3 kids study overseas, both of us settling down overseas and him having small business here, I believed, their answer would be, “Impossible!”. They couldnt even afford a proper meal for us those days.

We had our ups and downs, but family stayed together. They never split us up out of convenience, so they could earn more money. They never sent us away to our grandmothers or aunts, so they could focus on earning more. Nothing is wrong with this arrangement, some family does that, I know. But I am grateful, my family’s arrangement was never like this. I grew up with my brothers and we had real strong bonding, even we tried to kill each other everyday. Now we are adults, we know we can count on each other and we talk almost everyday, even though we dont stay in the same house.

We may not be able to see our future now, but we have choice to believe that our future will be better. God is for us, and loves us. He will surely provide everything, but it’s important for us to lay our family foundation right.

If there is one thing my mom did right was, she always shared family situation with the children. When the finance wasn’t good, she would tell us, and we understood why we couldnt have dinner out every weekend like our friends. Even they didn’t share about the struggle and the failed business with us (we learned it ourselves when we grew up), we understood and didn’t demand much from them.

I remembered, when we were in college, while our friends planned for a trip at the beach, I didn’t join them. The thought of using my parents' hard-earned money for my own holiday and pleasure… I just couldnt do that. What I’m trying to say is, being rich and wealthy is God’s blessings, but kids have the ability to understand family circumstances, as long as love is not lacking in the family.

If we compare ourselves against other friends, we might feel small and poor in wealth. However, when I compare my life now with my childhood and my parents, I am VERY BLESSED. God never left us, and always there for us. Thus, my brother and I encouraged each other to remember to live for today, and have a good hope about future.

“Our minds tend to gravitates towards negative, especially when circumstances were difficult, therefore we need to fill our hearts with positive words and hope.” (Victoria Osteen — Exceptionally You)

Paint our future good and believe God will show the way. We are not alone in this world. God is with us.



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Writer by heart. Loved dearly by God. Saved by Christ. Live in Christ. Live for Christ.