just speaking for the square-peg kids, and I
want all of them to know they’re winners.
Even using the term, square-peg kid,
sounds like they’re not as “round” as they
should be. What I’d like you to imagine in
your mind is that plastic toy my kids loved
when they were about 18 months old. It was
shaped like a ball; and one half was red, and
the other half was blue. Dotted around the
sides were variously shaped openings. One
was square, one round, oval, diamond, star-shaped, etc. (I just found out it was called
the Shape-O® toy by Tupperware®).
The point of the toy was to take the yellow, plastic shapes provided and put them
through their corresponding shaped hole.
It was easy for an adult—round shape in
round opening, star shape in star-shaped
opening. You get the picture.
But for a one-year-old, it was no easy
task, and I’d sit with a little kid on my lap
guiding him through the entire operation,
only to separate the halves, dump out the
pieces, and do it all over again.
It was always funny to me how hard they
would try to push a star piece through a
square-shaped opening. They’d turn it,
push harder, turn it again . . . and push
again. No matter how hard they tried, a
star-shaped piece just wouldn’t fit into the
That’s how I want you to view your children and their post high school path. Children are a bunch of different shaped pieces,
and you as parents want to find the right
path for each of them.
Up until now, there has pretty much been
only one opening shape. If you didn’t fit the
hole, you were doomed to fail. I happened
to fit the opening pretty well.
While I was at college, besides meeting
my wife, I learned a whole bunch of stuff,
some of which I wished I hadn’t. In fact,
there were some self-inflicted wounds that
would heal but always leave scars. My wife
experienced some of her own wounds and
scars. In fact, when I talk to most everyone
who went to college, they all have scars that
they acquired during their time at college.
I graduated, got married, got a job, and
had a child or two. Being the renegade that
I was, I decided early on in my parenting
career that college was definitely not the
best option for my children. It wasn’t that I
had any other great ideas or plans for what
they’d do after high school, I was just con-
vinced that there had to be a better way.
I’m sure in my own pompous, self-right-
eousness way I thought I had it all figured
out and preached to others that I wasn’t
going to send my God-fearing children to
college . . . maybe something else would be
better. Then my wife slammed me square-
ly between the eyes with a godly-counsel
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I hadn’t even considered or asked God what He wanted for my children
and never considered that it might look different for every one of them.