If you have NEVER questioned your parenting abilities hats off to you … you have done exceptionally well. But to the parents like me … we are our biggest critic. Our fears scream at us and we repeatedly question our parenting skills – Was it something I did or didn’t do? Where did I miss the mark? The what-ifs come fast and furious as we watch our babies grow up into adulthood.
It would be wishful thinking … but what if we had the internet, or Google, or even a mandatory class on Parenting back in the 70’s. I’m thinking that many of us would have become Professors on ‘Do’s and Don’ts of Parenting.’ Parenting is a lifetime job and it definitely does not stop when they grow up or leave home. Becoming a parent is FOREVER even if they are successful and have a wonderful family.
Someone said, “Everyone knows how to raise children except the people who have them.” I’m leaving this one right here for you to think about. If you ask me … just know that I had four to raise … so my answer will be the obvious. Having one child makes you a parent. Having two or more … makes you say, ‘Ooooohhh’.
Job was a good, honest man who respected God and refused to do evil. He was the richest man in the East … had seven sons and three daughters. Like most families today … his children held big birthday parties, but Job was never invited. So far it sounds pretty much like most of our own family’s story. So don’t lose heart if you don’t get invited to the parties, it’s been happening centuries before we were born.
Even though Papa Job never attended the parties … he habitually prayed for his children when he knew the party was over and everyone was on their way back home. The ‘I can’t sleep’ nights until we know they are safely in their homes. We pray up a storm all night long for the souls of our children that they will find their way back to God before it is too late. The ‘Come to Jesus Prayer.’
Job’s prayer was for the hearts of his children to turn to God … not for their successes or their wealth … but for their spiritual well-being. The richest man in the East had a prayer life. The greatest gift we can give our children is prayer. We pray that their hearts will turn to God and they will not be enticed or drawn away by worldly living. Their spiritual well-being is the heart of the matter.
The Bible says, “And when the days of the feast had run their course…he would rise early and offer burnt offerings for the number of them all. For Job said [he prayed], ‘It may be that my children have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.’ (Job 1:5).
Parents, Job would rise up EARLY and pray for each one of his ten children. He knew if his kids were hosting parties … sin and ungodly behavior would make God turn His face away. Job didn’t mix his words when he was praying for his ten children. He was an honest man who respected and feared God, and understood the folly of his children. Prayer does no good if we as parents live in denial. This story was written in the Bible for our admonishment.
Give us as parents and our adult children wisdom and insight as we make decisions on the parenting values of our children, our careers, our marriages and the spiritual well-being of our families.
Guide us and protect us from evil and the appetites that want to destroy our families.
Let us be like Job who was faithful to You in the face of the evil that surrounded his family. May the present generation and the future generations be kept by Your Word so that we may not sin against You.
In Jesus’ Name we pray,