Strictly For Parents!
A friend remarked the other day that there was so much carnage in the world today and the sad part for her is that when one looks at the center of the problem, we find young people as the protagonists. She turned to me at that moment and said sadly “something must be drastically done”. She was right! These problems are not limited to under-developed or developing countries but are becoming endemic in the developed world as well: the Christians and the non-Christians alike. It is quite mind boggling when a young person from a privileged background, and lives in one of the great economies of the world decides that it is fun and fulfilling to go half way around the world to kill people in a fight that its politics, they cannot defend. Or how does one explain a situation when young people see nothing wrong in physically exposing themselves on the internet in a bid to be accepted and popular! The list is endless.
The Bible tells us parents, especially the fathers: “And fathers, don’t stir up anger in your children but bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). The emphasis on that verse is training and instruction: “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6). The failure for not carrying out the above Scripture is the result that we see around us from all over the world today. It is terrible when parents don’t see the wrong in their children, but search for excuses so they could continue in their wayward spiraling into destruction. We may blame the technological advancement; these advancements are not supposed to usurp our duties as parents. When you cede your responsibility to bringing up your child in the way of the Lord to the ‘world wide web’, don’t act surprised when they become uncontrollable monsters around you. The question I would like to ask as a parent is: Is there a separate Heaven and Hell for adults and children? If there is none, why do we think that God will turn a blind eye to the evil that these children willfully commit? God was angry with Eli for not correcting his sons when they were grossly misbehaving in the House of the Lord! For that reason, countless generations of his to come were cursed: “I told him that I am going to judge his family forever because of the iniquity he knows about: his sons are defiling the sanctuary, and he has not stopped them” (1Samuel 3:13).
Friend, there will be no excuse on that DAY! So many parents like Eli will be cast from the Presence of God for not stopping the madness of their children. The Bible says: “The rod and rebuke give wisdom, but a child left to himself brings shame to his mother” (Proverbs 29:15) and “Correct your son, and he will give you rest; yes, he will give delight to your soul” (Proverbs 29:17). Some parents remove the rod and believe that rebuking alone will do the work. Friend, God knew what He was saying when He added the rod because: “Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; the rod of correction will drive it far from him” (Proverbs 22:15). If one is neglected for the other, the instruction and growth is incomplete and the child is worse off: “The one who will not use the rod hates his son, but the one who loves him disciplines him diligently” (Proverbs 13:24). It is spiritual death for your child, to pamper him without teaching and disciplining him in God’s word through gentleness that is balanced with fairness and wrapped in love. So many children are excused for their rudeness and lack of responsibility because they are children! When they grow, their parents act surprised when they exhibit shameful acts.
God instructed us as parents to consciously and continually feed our children with His word, verbally and by modeling it (Deuteronomy 6:6-7). Your success as a parent is not the amount you have kept in trust for your children, their schools pedigree or the things you are able to buy for them, but, how much of God’s ways they were able to assimilate from you. Children of God, don’t train up your children to know only the acts (Hand) of God but train them to know His ways (Heart), this will save their soul and give you rest. The state may come up with laws from the pit of hell to enslave the children but you must rise up determined like Jochebed (mother of Moses) and feed your child in the secret place with the milk and meat of God’s word such that when he/she is in the midst of ungodly people, he/she will refuse to be called or numbered amongst them (Hebrews 11:12). God bless you.