Hello Dear Mommas! Before I begin this I have a confession to make…when I was asked to do this piece I thought “great I got this.” Well is our God not funny in the ways he chooses to correct us or grow us up!
As I started reading, praying, and writing about how God sees our children and our parenting I have been convicted in many areas. I am still searching my heart and seeking the areas in my parenting that God wants to change. I am not at all to the point that I can say I have come to understand it all or that I live by it but these are God’s truth and his view of our parenting.
I pray someday I will be able to say “yes Lord I get it” or “yes Lord this is how I do it.” The process of growth and change does not happen over night and can not happen unless we turn our hearts towards God’s truth. So join with me to hear some encouraging, instructive, and corrective instruction from God!
I have broken the pieces down into three sections and each section covers three different topics on parenting God’s way. Take time to read them, meditate, and pray about each one.
Monday and Tuesday
Commitment in truth
Dedication to the Lord
Reflection of God
COMMITMENT IN TRUTH
Commit to the Lord whatever you do and your plans will succeed. Psalm 16:3
First lets ask ourselves before we had kids how many of us had an idea in our minds of whom they would be? Anyone laughing yet? You know where I am going with this right? Well we all found out pretty quickly that the image of what we thought our kids would be like was not at all reality. Why is this? Let us ask ourselves this where did we get this view of who our kids would be?
For most of us we had a second-hand obscure look into parenting and who are children would be. We babysat, had siblings, we read books, watched TV, and listened to the adults around us talk about their experience’s of parenting. While these may give us a taste of parenting nothing can prepare you for who YOUR child would turn out to be. We have all hear the saying “kids don’t come with instructions.” While it is true they don’t hand you a manuscript on your child in the nursery there is a book that DOES give you all the instruction you will need. This book tells us who our kids are, what they will need, how to love them, how to correct them, and where to turn when we are unsure. Okay ladies say it with me that book is the…..BIBLE.
Now some of you may have turned to this book before having kids. I certainly was not one of them. I like a lot of unprepared mommas thought that each child would be raised differently and individually. Now it is true that each child does have their own needs and personalities and meeting them can take us on different paths; but God has set clear fundamental guide lines on how to raise our children a base from which we all must start and stepping-stones along the paths of their lives. One view I had of my children before starting this that was not fully seen in the truth was that they were ONLY beautiful creations of God. Now they of course are but I was missing one important view of them. They are sinners with a sinners nature. I would passively dismiss their behaviors as “just being kids.”
Folly is bound up in the heart of a child but the rod of correction will drive it away. Proverbs 22:15
Before we have children God wants us to commit in marriage to one man. Then two flesh become one. This is not just a spiritual fact but a physical manifestation made real in the birth of our kids. We must commit to raising these kids, we must commit to loving these kids, and we must commit to correcting these kids. Now we do that right? We love them, we feed them, and we hold them when they cry. But what if we looked at the commitment to our kids the way God sees his commitment to us.
How did commit to us? Why did he commit to us? How does he stand firm in that commitment? If we have a view of our children the way God sees us before coming to Christ then some of us would be nuns right now. The sobering truth is this. Our kids are sinners and are headed toward destruction. Oh sure they are cute little balls of Joy when we have them but this is not of their choice. God makes them that way (I think so we don’t eat them) but we are in this flesh from sinners; headed toward eternal separation from God; and true the moment we are born. Now don’t start throwing verses out there that speak on the loving formation in the womb. Yes yes this all true but who did that? Did your child? Did you? Nope that is an act of God it is his power and will. Our birth right-handed down to us from the fall of man is sin. Why should we look at kids this way; because the beginning of all wisdom is the fear of the Lord. When we decide to have a child and start preparing ourselves for their arrival we need to keep in mind their eternal lives. We need to pick up that guide to kids that God has given us and start praying over them right from the beginning, speaking truth and forgiveness of sins from the moment they enter the world, and live with the Holy fear that their eternal souls are being battled for by our enemy. God tells us to commit whatever we do to him this includes our parenting. We are so apt to forget that this too is part of the “whatever you do.” Our right view of God’s sacrifice for us, love of his creation, and commitment through all seasons is the beginning of setting our own minds toward the raising of the child God gave YOU. No mistakes each child was formed specifically for you. They were known by our father as he knows all creation. We must not assume that our kids will be what we expect them to be because there is only one who truly knows them. Ask God who they are, seek his understanding on their lives; seek his word for the ways he wants us to raise them. One of my favorite quotes is “learn to love the kids we are given, not the ones we wanted. This is one of the biggest commitments we as moms must make to love them for them, to fight for their salvation, and to speak the truth in love.
” The tongue has power of life or death and those who love it will eat its fruit. Proverbs 18:21″
Dedication to the Lord.
“For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition that I made to him. Therefore I have lent him to the Lord. As long as he lives, he is lent to the Lord.” And he worshiped the Lord there. ” 1 Samuel 1:27-28
“Consecrate to me all the firstborn. Whatever is the first to open the womb among the people of Israel, both of man and of beast, is mine.” Exodus 13:2
Okay ladies now it seems quite obvious why we dedicate our children right? Let us dive a little deeper into God’s wisdom and understanding as to why this is necessary.
When we have our children how many parents do you think of when you think of those that will be raising them. For some of us there is a mom and a dad. For some of us we will be raising our children as single parents; if you are one or the other the same is true for both there is another parent involved in their lives and he is the most important one of all. When we are willing give over our children to God what does this say? We are saying God “God they are yours, your will for them is right, and we are willing accept that you are their Father.” Now obviously we can do this from birth or any time throughout their lives but an open dedication in front of men is what God not only wants but requires. In the Old Testament the first of the sons born to any couple was brought to the temple and presented to the Lord and the people. It was not only for the parents to show their children but to openly proclaim that these children belonged to GOD. Now God does not desire that we only dedicate our sons but ALL of the children we have. Here are three reasons why dedicating our children to the Lord is so important to God
#1 We are openly acknowledging God’s superior presence as their Father before men.
#2 We are committing to the Lord and before men that we accept God’s will for their lives.
#3 We speak against the plans of the enemy for our children.
Remember the scripture life and death in the power of the tongue? When we openly dedicate them we are doing just that speaking life into them and on them. We are binding plans of the enemy and fully submitting to the will of God. The enemy hates when we dedicate our children because in doing so we place a hedge of protection around their very souls. Open dedication also accepts that their very lives and the length of their lives is up to the Will of God. For some of us this is a hard thing to think about. No one wants to imagine that their children could be gone from this earth before us. The fact of the matter is that God gives and he takes, death is not impartial, and accidents can happen. When we fully grasp the understanding that these kids will not be free from death just because we choose not to dedicate to the full will of God then we can fully see the need to dedicate their lives to the Lord. Remember God loves them more than we do; there is no place that he is not there, and he has a plan and a purpose for all. Dedicate your children to God allow him to be honored for the blessings he has given, and speak God’s will onto their lives. One last point to make Dedication is not baptism. A dedication is just as important but a baptism is something our children will choose to do on their own when the Lord has called them. Yes there are mainly similarities to the two but the first is a choice of the parents the second is a choice of the child.
Reflections of us reflect God.
“In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Mathew 5:16
“Be Holy as I am Holy” 1 Peter 1:16
“Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. 7 If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is. From now on, you do know him and have seen him!” John 14:6
“Jesus replied, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and yet you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father! So why are you asking me to show him to you? 10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words I speak are not my own, but my Father who lives in me does his work through me. 11 Just believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me. Or at least believe because of the work you have seen me do. 12 “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father. 13 You can ask for anything in my name, and I will do it, so that the Son can bring glory to the Father. 14 Yes, ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it!” John 14: 9-14
Okay ladies this will be the hardest of these three for us to take in. If we open our hearts to the conviction of God’s love and desire for his children to live a holy life than we will make it through. Okay so I have heard it said from society world view “you should not expect your kids to be like you.” “They should not reflect you.” If I am the only one that has heard these then I am in shock. In one form or another we all have told that our kid’s decisions and actions should not reflect who we are as parent’s right? Well wrong again is the world’s view. As CHILDREN, FOLLOWERS, and REPRESENTATIVES of God we are not only but required to reflect who our Father is. We are his chosen messengers on this earth. The world watches us and the enemy accuses us. He is the one speaking into the minds and hearts of unbelievers and believers alike (yes even Christians watch other Christians.) Jesus told us that if we believe in him and choose to follow him we must follow God because there is no separating them. When did Jesus ever say “well my father said this but I do this instead but still you should follow my father because he knows what is right.” No that would have been foolishness and would not have fulfilled the righteous sacrifice that God required. Praise you Jesus you did what was the will of the father!
Christ MIRRORED the father. The father’s will was his will, the father’s heart was his heart, and the father’s love was his love. In the same way we are to live our lives. Jesus tells us to not be of the world but to be transformed through the renewing of our minds. If our lives reflect who Christ is then the testimony of our walk will reflect who God is. If we are walking in our ways as believers then we are not reflecting who God is an in fact are leading others astray by representing a false view of whom God is. Now let us get to the hard part here. In the same way our kids reflect who we are. Our children learn and live what they are taught. The ways you choose to spend your time, money, blessings, words, and abilities will teach our children what is important in this life. Anyone feeling convicted yet? I sure am. Sometimes as a mom and my kids are behaving in a way that I find annoying or is obviously wrong I think to myself “where did you get this?:” “what is wrong with YOU?” The best answer is this what is wrong with ME? What are my actions speaking to my kids? What areas of my life am I failing them? If I am a grumpy self-seeking individual it should come as no surprise that my kids will be the same. If I am constantly going through mood swings; then what am I to expect of my children?” The hard bottom line truth is this that we are teachers and good or bad these kids are learning their behaviors from us. It is right that God expects us to follow him and it is right to expect our kids to follow us following him. Now let us not freak out and start going through every bad choice they made see where our faults lies (a self-check is needed) but we must also remember that these kids also have what we have. That is FREE WILL. Our kids like us are given the choice to follow or not to follow. We must look at the life we are living to be sure that our life style does not reflect the idea that their choice of rebellion is okay or acceptable. We need to always be aware that we are students in need of wisdom and teachers always teaching. Come before God and seek his wisdom for he gives freely and we need to teach this wisdom to our kids. If we walk before God reflecting to the world who he is then we teach our children to do the same. Will we always get it right? No in this world we will fail but we must continuously strive toward Holiness.
End of part One ladies!!!
Question: How does seeing God’s instruction on parenting change the way we choose to parent??
Submitted by CF for the Gift of the Home
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