6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
Proverbs 22:6 (KJV)
As I began my day, the Lord and I had a conversation: Why does it seem that the more we care about our kids the less they adhere to the Word of God, Godly principles and the Godly examples? Is there really some truth to the ‘Pay-back’ scenario that we grew up believing? I thought once we were ‘Born Again’, all things became new? Isn’t our past ‘under the blood’ so to speak?
God reminded me that although His principles are SURE, there are some things that only He will be able to declare:”7 So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.8 Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour” (I Corin 3:7-8 – KJV). God is sovereign in His judgements. Our responsibility as parents is to ‘train up’ children in the statues of Godliness. It will be their decisions that will bring God’s judgements. Too many times guilt and fear cause us to interfere in life’s lessons. This is where the reaping and sowing become their opportunity to learn or have unrealistic expectation of their understanding.
We can only ‘protect’ our children for a short time. After they reach ‘age-of accountability’ (by the way there is not a magic number), our attempts to protect them can be misconstrued. At times protection is not an option, we can only Love, Pray and Support them in their decisions. We tend to love them SO much that we are willing take the bullet for them if we could. We as parents; can actually do more harm than good, if we interfere with their responsibilities to become adults. We must trust that the Godly Foundations, Example of Integrity & Positive Influences will “kick-in” in times of distress.
This in no means releases us from our responsibilities to be that Godly, Positive Influence on their lives. Furthermore, it is not enough to be; we also need to speak positive, Godly words of encouragement (not lectures). If you think about it lectures are not positive, it assumes the negative and reinforces the “I’ll prove you wrong” mentality of adolescence. Explore with your children becoming adults – get their thoughts and allow them to ask questions. Give them the tools to make good decisions but it has to be ‘their’ decisions.
Finally, the Lord reminded me that “everybody makes mistakes; every now and again they take the wrong path and definitely are impulsive sometime in their life”. It just stings when its “your kids”, and “they should know better”. Parents do yourself a favor, flashback to your youth, what would a positive understanding word, have done for you in that situation? Welcome your children’s mistakes, hold their hands, allow them to work their situation(s) out for themselves and pray that they make a good decision the next time. There is no fool-proof way to assure they will, or won’t. Oh, but do make sure you answer their calls in the midnight hours.