The Bible tells us that children are a blessing and gift to parents and they truly are. But even though it is the truth, it doesn’t mean it always feels that way. It can seem like it when you look on social media, when you see al the happy pictures of perfect families. It looks that way when I enter the living room of one of my friends. It is always neat and clean and organized. Her kids are polite and always seem to behave well. How glad it made me to hear about her struggles with her son. Not glad for her of course, but glad it’s not just me who is having struggles with this whole parenting thing. I think Christians all over the world encounter the same difficulties in parenting.
One of the hardest jobs
There are times we are left confused and worried that we aren’t doing it right. I find parenting is one of the hardest jobs, if not the hardest job, that God has given us. Sometimes we are joking if God forgot to send the manual along. For every job, we study years before we actually start the job. But in this huge responsibility of raising kids I often feel inadequate. I find myself in this age where everyone around me is starting a family. When we became parents we lived in Namibia as missionaries, we had a lovely team of people around us, but no one with parenting experience. So everything was new. I remembered people always said that when children get 2 years old, they start the “No”-phase, so that I recognized. But no one ever said it wouldn’t stop.
God who is our perfect Father, never fails to be patient, loving and good to us.
We learned that while children are growing and developing you go from one phase to the next. And every time we wondered, “Is this normal?”, “Is this just a phase or is this a permanent thing?”. I think no one is ever really prepared for the job or could oversee what it all enhanced. And I think that’s for the better. Like it is written in Isaiah, We only see a short way, but God oversees it all. He knew exactly what He did when he placed this little bundle of love into your arms.
Having kids brings a great deal of responsibility. My husband and I traveled to Uganda last month for 6 days with just the two of us. It was the first time we were more then one night away from the children. It was a long way to travel and it took us almost 24 hours to reach our destination, but the trip went above expectations and we felt relaxed when we arrived. Due to the fact we weren’t responsible for any other but ourselves. We didn’t had to watch over, take care for or entertain anyone but ourselves. That almost became unnatural. Because the moment you become a parent, this child is depending on you for all his needs.
Parenting with God
Just as in so many things in life, parenting is also something I wouldn’t gladly face without God on my side. His Word is there to guide and to encourage us and the fruit of the Spirit is definitely a must when you have kids. Patience, kindness, goodness, peace, love, joy, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Yep, all of them are required when it comes to parenting. When my seven year old is being stubborn, won’t listen and acts rude, I find myself often praying out loud for some heavenly advice, or Godly peace to fill me and renew my patience. Having children gives a new meaning to being a “child of God”. We are depending on Him for our every need, and the needs of our children. We need His guidance and wisdom even harder. And God who is our perfect Father, never fails to be patient, loving and good to us.
Children of God
My favorite moment as a mother is when one of the kids falls asleep against my breast. That is the moment where my “love-tank” for them gets filled again. You get all the time to study their pretty faces while they are totally at peace and secured in your arms. I think this is maybe also Gods favorite moment to look down, to see His child looking to His other child with the same love He feels for them both.
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