Many years back, on two occasions, I had the opportunity to speak to our church on Parenting. The messages were titled ‘Like Arrows’ derived from the Bible verse in Psalms 127:4 and ‘Godly seed’ from Malachi 2:15.
As I prepared for those two sermons, one thing stood out clearly, parenting is not a natural progression after marriage. It is a calling, it is ministry work, it is intended for discipleship. We have heard it said so many times that your family is your first congregation. One of the reasons why God loved Abraham so much was because He trusted that he will command his household after Him. ‘Command’ is a strong choice of word, quite deliberate to shows that parents have the power to nudge their children along a godly path.
Every new couple at some point in their relationship, must sit down and ask themselves a few questions. Why do we want to be conduits for life? Are we able to give life beyond birth? Are we responsible enough for ourselves to lead another? What plans do we have for a child? God as our model parent says over each one of us that ‘He knew us even before we were born and He had plans for each one of us, not just any plan – good plans, meant to bring us not just to any end but to an expected end.’ (Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV)
Every parent or expecting parent should ponder on these three questions:
1. Do you know the child that you have or so desperately desire? Children have needs, they require love, attention, time, sacrifice and most of all, ‘You’. Are you aware of this, have you given enough of yourself as required? Did you think of the cost of parenting before you walked this path?
2. What plans do you have for your child? Does it align with heaven’s plans? Is the path that you have carved out, taking your child to that expected end? Have you surrounded your child with the right enablers? Are you present just like God is, to guide on the best pathway or have you delegated or outsourced your mantle?
3. What is the expected end? Every parent wants their child to be successful, whatever that definition of success is. Every child should be equipped for the world, life here and in the world to come. Every moment with your child while they are still children, is a teaching moment. A time will come when they will have their own minds and what will manifest is what has been so carefully programmed in it by intention or default. A time too will come when they will also teach, will you be proud of the script that you handed down?
I pray that the eyes of our understanding are enlightened to the calling that is placed on those of us who are parents or desire the office of a parent. Yes, parenting is an office, even though no one had written out a job description for it, one thing is required “a heart that wants to see generations of godly seed birth”.
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