I remember when my oldest child was born, my first thoughts were "Here is this child who is totally dependent on his father and I for everything..Will he be able to trust in us the way I trusted in my own parents to meet my every need?" I'm sure I'm not alone here. "Here is this helpless life that we've been given...do we have what it takes to raise him to know Christ and to be able to stand against all the opposition he will have to face in this world?" It all seemed so overwhelming at the time.
How quickly the years have gone by and it's hard to comprehend that in just a few short years, my son will be thrust out into the world having to make his own choices and begin his future as a man. Where has the time gone? As I sit here today, I wonder if we've given him what he'll need..have we laid a strong enough foundation for him to stand when the storms of life come?
You know, I think we all question our ability to raise our kids right. We may not have all the answers but we serve a God who does. I sincerely believe that if we earnestly pray and seek God about it, He will give us direction and wisdom on how to teach and guide our children. When my son began asking questions about God, I felt inadequate to answer him and it caused me to go to my knees in prayer. I want to pray as a fellow christian mother once prayed, "Lord, let them have a desire to serve You and let them be established in Your word; let their roots go down deep so they can stand when the storms come. Protect them from the snares of this world. Shelter them under your wing." In this world, we know our children will face temptation. What's unfortunate is that parents have come to accept it as "normal" for their children to experiment with the temptations of sex, drugs/alcohol, even spiritualism and we've come to think that it's a "phase" they will grow out of. I don't believe that. "They have to try things", people say. I did not have to try drugs to know they could kill me. Why even let them be exposed to such things. In the Bible, did the good shepherd allow his sheep to wander off with the wolves for a time, trusting that they would find their way back on their own. NO! He went running after them to rescue them from certain death. His fear was that they would be devoured, that the enemy would destroy them. He loved them enough to go out and try to save them. Did he sit by and do nothing when they got too close to the edge? I heard a story recently, of a young teen who wanted to experiment with witchcraft because her friends made it look "cool and fun". When the parent talked to a minister's wife about it, she was told it was just a phase that the girl would grow out of. I don't believe we can tell our kids that fire is dangerous and then just let them play around with it. There are some things you just don't mess with.
I just want to encourage you as parents to go to God with your concerns about your children. Each one is different and special in His eyes and He loves them more than you and I ever could, and He's entrusted them to you. Maybe you can't be with them 24/7, like you'd like to be, but you can pray. Prayer is our greatest weapon. He alone knows their hearts and their silent struggles. It may take time and vigilant prayer, but I know if we seek Him, He will give us the wisdom and opportunity to speak a word of truth to them, to plant/water a seed for Him in their lives, to help guide our children, no matter how old they are. I believe if our kids can keep their focus on the Lord, keep their mind set on Him, be determined to stand and go to Him in prayer continually, I know they can make it. They do not have to become ensnared in this world. They can stay clear of it. Parents-Don't let your guard down. Be vigilant. Watch who they hang around with, what they're reading and watching, even what the schools are teaching them. I encourage you to speak up and don't be afraid to say something. Remember, they're watching us, looking for someone to follow...someone who will be that example to them of how to live this life. Let that someone be you- Let them see Jesus in you. That's a daily struggle for all of us as we're all well aware of our own weaknesses. But let that be your inspiration to pick yourself up and fight another day. It'll be worth it all when we see Jesus. Keep up the fight of faith. God Bless You.