Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Responsiblity of a Parent

Genesis 18:19 "For I have chosen him, so that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring upon Abraham what He has spoken about him."

Deuteronomy 6:7 You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.

Psalms 78:4 We will not conceal them from their children, But tell to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, And His strength and His wondrous works that He has done.

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it.

Ephesians 6:4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.

I'm not really sure what made me think of the Proverbs verse today, but I did and upon investigation I found these related verses that seemed appropriate. While a couple of them do refer to fathers and I could focus on the role of the man in the relationship, I won't. Today my thoughts are more on parenting in general. Being a relatively new parent and a rather Type A personality, I have read/ am reading several books about parenting. I love reading for the information, ideas, explanations, and stories I am given in them. These are important to me because some days the task seems too overwhelming. Other days it is extremely stressful. And still other days it is fun. I am still leaving out a whole range of emotions, but my point is made.

We see in Genesis that God has given parents a rather enormous task. Get your children to follow the way of the Lord. Deuteronomy and Psalms basically tells us to always tell our kids about Him. I'm guessing he means even when they don't want to listen and when they are throwing a tantrum, and when they are moody teenagers, etc. So after all that I'm thinking, "How in the world can I do this? That job is too big!" Well the first problem with that idea is the word I. So after realizing that and saying lots of prayers for Ben and probably not enough for me, I'm at the verse I started the day with, Proverbs. This verse is comforting because it reminds me that if I do my job to the best of the ability God has given me. I'll be okay and so will Ben. When I think a little more, I start wondering, exactly how do I do this training. And that's where Ephesians comes in, which relates back to the verses at the beginning. (And yes that sounds like circular logic.) So when I get overwhelmed by the responsibility of parenthood, I should come back to these verses and see that it isn't about me. It's about God. It isn't about MY kid(s). It's about the kid(s) HE's given me. When I focus on HIM and follow HIM, everything will fall into place. Whether that everything is parenting or teaching or whatever is going on, it's HIS job to lead and my job to follow.

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