Speak Eagle

Warning: This 2-minute Parenting Film May Require Tissues

Lights, Camera, Action!

A few weeks ago, my two youngest boys were soooo sad to miss school for two whole days to star in a short film by the production company Seventh Story as a promo for an upcoming Lifeway parenting conference called “Etch.”

I got to play their mom.


They had a director, tech crew, costume and makeup assistants (who were good at creating fake wounds like the one above!), and snacks galore.


They had to do tough things like play with a puppy, swing on a swing, play basketball, pretend to be hurt, and get kisses from me. And they got paid for it.

I’m afraid making money from doing chores at home now seems like a pretty raw deal.

The raw deal for me was having to watch my boys grow up right in front of me!

The film created childhood snapshots of one boy as he grows up- with my two playing the youngest stages of the boy, while two other actors played the older stages. It was uncanny how much the four boys all looked alike. I was in tears as my youngest pretended to shave, and then the oldest boy shaved for real!


The toughest scene for me was when I was directed to sit on a couch while my youngest, Justin, laid his head in my lap and I stroked his hair. Once the crew got that shot, they then directed Justin to leave and the oldest boy, maybe 17 years old, assumed the same position, laying his head in my lap. Only his body now stretched all the way across the couch!

Can you say, heartstab?

Being the consummate, disciplined actor that I am, I started sobbing. The director asked, “Do you need to take a break?” I’m guessing an emotional breakdown of the mother was not supposed to be part of the scene. But then, what can you do when you’ve suddenly witnessed your little boy transform from age 7 to 17 in 30 seconds?!

oldest to youngest

In the end, it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and I love how the short film turned out. In less than 2 minutes, they captured so many special childhood moments, 18 years of snapshots that communicate to all of us of our very important job of parenting.

Grab a tissue, and click on the video below to watch it!

Etch God’s Word on Their Hearts from LifeWay Kids on Vimeo.

4 thoughts on “Warning: This 2-minute Parenting Film May Require Tissues”

  1. Thanks for the Monday morning cry, Heidi! After a busy, but very fun filled weekend ended with Mommy kissing the first skinned knee of the upcoming summer season only to having him snuggle in my arms with the sweetest little 3-year old voice saying “just lay here with me for just five more minutes, Mommy” this morning, this not so gentle reminder of how quickly he’s growing up was just the thing I needed to tell me to cherish EVERY MOMENT!!! Thanks Heidi!! As always, you nailed it! 🙂

  2. Beautiful video, and I love your comic and touching review of the experience for your family. We watch them in the way they go…and grow!

  3. You’ve done it again, Dr. Petak.
    Great story, wonderful challenging message to parents, superb acting by all involved!.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Dad P

    1. Thanks for the encouragement, Dad! I know the boys will never forget the experience (and neither will I!)

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