I haven't read much about Paul Ryan and I hadn't heard him speak until last night. I really enjoyed his speech. What impressed me the most was the tribute he paid to his parents. My favorite quote was, "My mom is my role model." What a great thing. Not only that his mom was worthy of being a role model, but that he chose her as his. It says much about him and the importance of family in his life.
Who are our role models? Are they celebrities? Politicians? Teachers? Leaders of our churches? Fictional characters? The Savior?
I think it's important to ask ourselves this question: Whose life do we emulate? The answer will influence us more than we think.
The flip-side of that question is are we living a life worth emulating by our children? By someone else? Do we set an example of being honest, trustworthy, and trying to do the right thing?
I remember an ad years ago. It showed a little boy and his dad walking along a country road. The dad threw a rock and so did the son. The dad did a few more things and so did his son. Then the dad lit up a cigarette and the caption was, "Like father, like son." There's also a song by Rodney Atkins, "Watching You," about how the little boy wants to be exactly like his dad.
There's an old saying, "I can't hear what you're telling me because your example is too loud."
Are we the kind of role models we should be? Do we model the kind of behavior that we should? Our kids as well as others are watching us. All the time. I can only hope that my kids will be able to say of me, as Paul Ryan said of his mother, that I was their role model. And it will be a good thing.