To Whom Much Is Given…

Your kids want to know why their friends don’t have to do chores. They want to know why you aren’t happy with middling grades. They want to know why you’re taking the trouble they got in so seriously. It’s not a big deal, they say. Their friend who doesn’t have to do chores got all B’s and his parents took him to Disneyworld. It’s not fair, they say. They want to know why your family has to volunteer at this stupid event. They want to know why you won’t just let them veg out and watch TV for hours on end.

In The Boy Who Would Be King, Marcus Aurelius’ mother answers her son’s complaints with a line that echoes a sentiment from the Bible: To whom much is given, much is expected.

You know that your family has been blessed. (“Who has it better than us?”) You know that life is a gift.You know your kids are talented, that they have so much potential. You know that they know what the right thing is. And that’s why you’re going to make sure that they make themselves “something and somebody,” to use ER Harriman’s phrase

Don’t let them waste their potential. Don’t insult them with the “soft bigotry of low expectations.” Don’t let them let themselves down. To whom much is given, much is expected. And much has been given to you and your family.

Believe in them. Expect things from them. Hold them accountable. 

They deserve that. And most importantly, they can handle it.  

Ryan’s new book, The Boy Who Would Be King, is a timeless story about fulfilling one’s potential. It’s an illustrated fable about Marcus Aurelius and how the influential figures in his life guided him along the path to becoming one of history’s greatest figures. You can order it in the Daily Stoic store, where you can also get a personalized signed copy. And we have some great news—for some reason, the ebook version of The Boy Who Would Be King is on sale on Amazon right now for up to 60% off. It won’t last long so grab it now.

P.S. This was originally sent on April 14, 2021. Sign up today for the Daily Dad’s email and get our popular 11 page eBook, “20 Things Great Dads Do Everyday.”

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