I had the joy of experiencing some fellowship with other ladies, this past week, and it never fails – when moms get together, they talk about their children!! SMILE! “Does yours sleep through the night?”. . . “Do you let yours crawl into bed with you?” . . . “Do you give your child Tylenol?” . . . “Mine was walking by the time they were 8 months old!” . . . And on it goes . . . It feels good to share from your own experiences and to gain from the experiences of others, doesn’t it?! How vitally important that we draw wisdom from our HEAVENLY FATHER’S parenting example! As a Christian parent, you are your child’s first glimpse of what GOD is like! Are you and your husband striving to be like Christ, as you raise your family?
More than any other quality, God shows His children LOVE. Jeremiah 31:3 “The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.” No child should be afraid that Mommy and Daddy will love them one day and despise them the next. Does this love sometimes require correction and discipline? Yes. Proverbs 3:11-12 shows a father saying, “My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction: For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.” Parents must lovingly correct and chasten, but they must also follow the Heavenly Father’s pattern for FORGIVENESS. I John 1:9 tells us that, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Once God forgives us, He does not bring up our past wrongs over and over again, and neither should we, with OUR children. True forgiveness is final! Psalm 103:12 “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.”
Our Lord carefully INSTRUCTS His children. Psalm 32:8 “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go . . .” He doesn’t leave us wondering what we should do, or pondering how to obey Him! James 1:5 “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.” As parents, we should be ready with instruction and wise counsel! We should be willing to take the time to teach and to train our children!
Hourly, daily, yearly, our Heavenly Father PROVIDES for His own. Matthew 7:11 “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?” As parents, we must prayerfully work and save, and do our very best, to meet the needs of those in our care. Matthew 6:26 “Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?” Matthew 6:30 “Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?” God lovingly takes care of each and every one of us!
Little girls and boys should be able to rest in the fact that their parents will seek to PROTECT them from harm! Will there be times when your child will fall down and hurt themselves? Will there often be circumstances beyond your control? Yes! But just as our Heavenly Father is there to protect His children, we must strive to be there for our little ones! Psalm 36:7 “How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings.” Children should know that when they are with Mom and Dad, they are SAFE! Psalm 91:1 “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” Do Mommies sometimes have to give up precious sleep during a thunderstorm? Do they often have to put their arms around someone small, when the wind is howling outside? That is what our Lord so often does for us! Psalm 91:5 “Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day.” Time and time again, our Heavenly Father gives us the peaceful reassurance that He will keep us SAFE!
What should we do when our children are crying? We should do what our Lord would do! Psalm 147:3 “He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.” Mommies need to be ready with hugs, with kisses, and with Band-Aids! That is what Jesus does for our hearts! Perhaps no other book of the Bible speaks of the COMFORT of God, like the book of Psalms. In Psalm 57:1-2, David prays, “Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast. I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me.” David knew that he could find shelter in God until the terrors surrounding him were over. Shouldn’t our babies be able to trust that Mommy and Daddy will have open arms for them, whenever things “go bump in the night”? Whenever they are afraid? I hear a lot of mothers say things like, “They have to learn to comfort themselves to sleep.” To a certain extent, God says to His children, “encourage thyself”, but He also says, “I will not leave you comfortless”! (I Samuel 30:6 + John 14:18) Aren’t we thankful that God hears us WHENEVER we cry out to Him?! Psalm 55:17 “Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice.”
You may be saying, “I don’t know how to be a proper parent! Do you have any good books you could recommend?” There is no better book on parenting than the Bible! There is no better example of parenthood than our loving Heavenly Father! Day in and day out, God loves, forgives, instructs, provides, protects, and comforts His children. May each godly mother and father strive to do the same!