Being a parent as a Christian means putting God first. Allowing God’s plans for our children can be scary, but we can trust His goodness.
I don’t always put my best foot forward as a parent. Sometimes I lose my temper, don’t listen to everything my children have to say, and am too quick to judgement.
On the other hand I have two children who think for themselves and can explain their thinking. My oldest just moved into a house with some friends and is totally ready to do some “adult-ing.” She is a college junior who has a plan for her future. My youngest is learning to let go of his fears and try new things. But the thing that I’m most proud of is their relationship with Jesus.
My daughter has learned that when life gets difficult, you should turn to Jesus and allow Him to help center your life. Phillip and I, as parents, have been able to model that for her. When she has turned to us for advice, the first thing we say to her is, start by praying.
Sharing God’s goodness comes so naturally to my son. He talks about Jesus at school often. Teachers, peers, and other parents have told me how kind he is and that they love being around him. A mom can’t ask for more than that.
Trusting the Father…
As I was reflecting on how amazing my children are in spite of my parenting mistakes, I thought about Mary and Joseph as parents to Jesus. First of all, can you imagine the pressure? Parents to God’s son? Whew!
Luke 2:41-52 tells the story of Jesus going to the temple at Passover. There was a large group of family members. It must have been quite a crowd because it wasn’t till the evening after they left, on their way home, Mary noticed that twelve-year-old Jesus was missing.
Mary’s panic must have been off the chart. She and Joseph took off back to Jerusalem looking for him. It took them three days of searching to find Jesus. He had never left the temple.
When they found him they were so relieved. But like any mother, Mary was ready to scold Jesus. If it had been me I would have raised my voice in a whisper through loud hiccuping sobs – “Where have you been? Your father and I have been looking everywhere for you. You have worried us sick.”
Instead of apologizing he says,
“Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?”
Luke 2:49, NIV
We don’t know much else about Jesus’ childhood except from this point on he was obedient and continued to learn and grow. He was well liked by the people who met him.
It seems a little counter intuitive to how we would handle the situation, but then our children aren’t divine either. What I learn from this passage is that when our children are in the arms of our Father, they are always okay.
Allowing God’s Plans…
Being a parent is such a gift, and a huge responsibility. The most important thing to remember isn’t any kind of professional advice or information from a parent guru. It’s a simple truth that is part of being a Christian – trust God. As humans we can’t see God’s plan, but we should trust that He has one not just for our lives, but for our children as well.
But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,
whose confidence is in him.
They will be like a tree planted by the water
that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes;
its leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought
and never fails to bear fruit.
Jeremiah 17:7-8, NIV
When we trust in our God, our worries for ourselves and our children will fall away. When we plant them and ourselves in God’s amazing garden we will all grow to be full and vibrant. That is God’s promise to us.
Thank you for blessing me with two beautiful children. Reveal to me Your path for their life. Give me the tools to help guide them toward Your light and love.