I’m not a worrier typically, but occasionally, there is a fear I have—I fear for the future of my children.
I suppose I’m not alone, that my fear is typical of many mothers, but it doesn’t make the “what if’s” less startling. What if my child faces death and persecution? What if something evil happens to my child? What if I’m not allowed to raise the child as God wants?
Yet, each time those fears surface, the Lord provides simple answers to calm my troubled spirit.
- Children are a blessing. It’s easy, amidst the overwhelming responsibility of nurturing and molding these little lives, to forget that children are more than a responsibility. But reading Psalm 127 always helps put my “responsibilities” in perspective. It is, afterall, the Lord who provides for the children and shapes who they will become. And no matter how hard I work to protect and shelter my little treasures, it is the Lord who is their ultimate Protector. On the other hand, the psalmist doesn’t say that I am the child’s blessing, but rather that the child is my “heritage,” my “reward” from God. In such a perverted age, how refreshing is a child’s innocence! What a reminder of God’s grace, God’s love, God’s fatherly care over us. Perhaps, children are meant to be reminders, pointing us to the Heavenly Father and revealing to us God’s perspective on our lives.
- Children are in the hands of God. I can’t help but think of Daniel. Ripped away from his family, rooted in a foreign ungodly land, yet resolved to live for his God—the God his parents had revealed to him. And what about Naaman’s little servant girl who told her master of the prophet that could heal his leprosy? Where were her parents? The ones who taught her about God and His prophet? My role is limited. It’s temporary. I hope and pray that I have 18+ years of training with each of my children, but the fact remains that it is the Lord who “builds the house.” My job is to train my child TODAY in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. Tomorrow, the Lord may take that training up Himself and personally finish it without my interference. And, as I look at the life of Daniel, Samuel, Joseph and others throughout history, I can’t help but notice how well they turned out under the Lord’s care.
- Children belong to the Lord. Remember Hannah, who begged God for Samuel and promised to give the child back to the Lord. What an evil day she lived in! Reading through the book of Judges, I am startled by the violence, the perversion, and the apostasy. Even the religious leaders (Eli and his sons) lived lifestyles that were appalling. Hannah wasn’t thinking about sparing a life from the corruption that she faced. She wanted to experience a blessing from God and to see the Lord use that blessing to change the corruption. Samuel was the Lord’s, at the moment of conception, at the door of the temple when Hannah left him, at the bedside when Samuel first responded to the call of God. Hannah knew that Samuel was God’s and was meant for the service of God. She merely wanted to enjoy him in the meantime and to have the privilege to play a role in his preparation for the Lord’s work. Her story is perhaps the most inspiring for me, providing a mother’s perspective.
Perhaps my children, like Samuel, have been born to confront corruption. Perhaps, like Esther, they’ve been given life for such a time as this. In the meantime, though, regardless of the news headlines and the most recent legislation, I have in my possession a blessing, a treasure, a heritage. And how precious, in the midst of the filth of sin, how precious that glimpse of God’s goodness becomes.