The chronicles of Israel and Judah’s kings given to us in 1 & 2 Kings and 1 & 2 Chronicles are sobering as a mother. God-fearing and God-honoring men had sons who committed great evil (i.e.: Jehoram son of Jehoshophat; Manasseh son of Hezekiah; Jehoahaz son of Josiah). It is true that once in a while it was the other way around -- an evil king had a son who did love the Lord, but I think the message is clear: We cannot assume our kids will grow up to love the Lord just because we do.
This anxiety-provoking, anguish-inducing thought can either paralyze us with fear, or motivate us to do battle for our children’s souls. Rather than being apathetic, take action! Here are some ways we can do this:
- PRAY, PRAY, PRAY for our children -- for their hearts to be soft and pliable toward God and His Word.
- LIVE a real (genuine) life of faith, complete with seeking forgiveness from our kids and the Lord when they see us fail (through our own actions, attitudes, words, etc.).
- TRAIN them in the ways of the Lord. Address the heart and not just behavior! I cannot emphasize the importance of that enough. Take time to be with them, to study and train them and teach them the way God intended:
“You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.” (Deuteronomy 6:5-7)
- DEVELOP a relationship with them by being with them. Play with them when they are young, support their endeavors as they grow, show interest in their interests, befriend them as adults...
- PROTECT our children from ungodly influences. This takes wisdom and discernment -- and courage! Moms, we need to be aware and beware of what our children are watching, listening to, where they are going, who their friends are, etc. Do not be fooled: these are the things that shape our children’s worldview, beliefs, choices.
- CRY OUT to God on behalf of your child, and on behalf of yourself for wisdom in raising them.
- TRUST God with the end result. Never stop praying, even if our greatest fear and sorrow becomes a reality: a child who does not love the Lord and walk in His ways. Never stop praying.
“Keep asking, and it will be given to you; keep seeking, and you will find; keep knocking, and it will be open to you” (Matthew 7:1)
Jesus Himself taught with parables “to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart” (from Luke 18:1).
This list is in no way exhaustive. If you have ideas you would like to share, add a “comment.” Please share the wisdom God has given you. I would love to hear from you!
Blessings to you and your “brood,”