Children are a Blessing

Brave Knights

At times, (okay, many times) my actions do not demonstrate my belief in this truth from Psalm 127:3-5, but it is true nonetheless.

Parenting is hard.  Sometimes I don’t like it.  I don’t like it when my kids act like selfish brats.  And I really don’t like it when, by displaying their sin nature, my kids expose me as the selfish brat.

A friend shared this article by Paul Tripp [Not to be confused with his brother Tedd Tripp, the author of Shepherding a Child’s Heartalthough they both sport a large mustache] on Facebook recently and God used it to convict and encourage me:

Parenting: It’s Never an Interruption

I’m still trying to wrap my brain around all it touches on, and am pondering the depth of true, biblical parenting…

When I got married, I gradually began to realize that marriage is a tool God uses to refine us (if we let Him).  I never realized how selfish and stubborn I was until I entered into a covenant relationship with this one person who loves me dearly and sometimes drives me crazy.

The same thing happened when I became a parent.  Just when I thought I couldn’t realize the depth of my sin nature any more than I had (and do) as a married person, God granted us the blessing of children.  And whoa, Nellie, did I begin to see even more of my own selfishness and sinfulness.  It confronts me every single day.  (Sometimes every single hour, or more!)

Let’s face it.  Parenting is not for the faint of heart.  Neither is marriage.  Or life, for that matter.  {Sigh}  But the truth of the matter is, if it weren’t hard, we wouldn’t need God’s help.  The “half glass full” side of adversity–and much of parenting can be classified as adversity–is that it keeps us dependent on His grace.  His strength.  His Word.

Regularly, I view my children as burdens.  I would never, ever say that to them in so many words, but isn’t that what I communicate when I treat them as though they are taking up my precious time?  Time that I’d rather spend reading/decorating/scrapbooking/gardening/researching/blogging/talking on the phone/shopping/completing a thought/studying my Bible, for crying out loud!?

I should stop here to point out that I am not an advocate of child-centered parenting, or whatever you want to call it.  I’m  certainly no expert; my eldest is 6½, which makes it a bit premature for me to dispense parenting advice of any kind.  However, I firmly believe that children should learn to help around the house and entertain themselves with creative pursuits of all kinds.

In other words, it is not my job to entertain them or serve as their constant playmate.  Nor is it my job to ensure their complete happiness and utmost pleasure at every moment of their little lives.

On the other hand, it IS my job to serve them, just as the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve.

It IS my job to look not only to my own interests, but also to the interests of those in my care, often placing their interests above my own.

It IS my job to weave His commands into the very fabric of our daily lives, talking about them when we lie down and when we rise, as we go about our lives at home and away from home.

It IS my job to demonstrate love.  Love is patient, love is kind.  It is not self-seeking or easily-angered.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

It IS my job–and His will for me–to practice thanksgiving in all circumstances.

Is IS my job to think about that which is true, noble and right.

And, according to Psalm 127, I know this to be true: Children are a gift.  They are a blessing.

Choosing to view my children as blessings changes my perspective on countless situations which occur throughout the course of a normal day.  It turns my impatience into perseverance.  It turns angry outbursts into opportunities to ask for forgiveness.  It turns my weaknesses into cries for His strength and my failures into gratitude for His grace.  And it turns my agenda over to the Sovereign Ruler of all things.

Have I perfected this practice, this habit of viewing my children as blessings?  Of course not!  I have absolutely no business writing a blog post entitled Children are a Blessing, except to declare it as the prayer of my heart.

May I be reminded daily, hourly and by the minute, that the days are long but the years are short.  These blessings entrusted to my care are not mine to keep; my time with them is fleeting.  May I strive to steward these blessings with care, viewing them as precious gifts from the Giver of every good and perfect gift.

Let me save this as the screensaver of my brain: Children are a Blessing.

 

 

 

 

 

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Kathleen Henderson

Kathleen Henderson

Let's get real! I’m Kathleen Henderson, your Natural Living Mentor. I’m on a mission to help families see the joy in real food, while finding natural remedies and creating a nontoxic home. Learn more about my story >>

1 Comment

  1. Avatar Sarah (Hoover) Zurin on 03/19/2013 at 1:36 pm

    SO True! Everything I believe and struggle with on a daily basis! May God continue to refine us as Mother’s, Wives, and daughter’s of the King.

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