Parents (especially mothers) are under spiritual attack because it is their responsibility to raise godly children. One way to protect ourselves from spiritual attack is to monitor or safeguard our children from evil influences. She listed the following influence on children: media, mom’s behavior, mom’s words and mom’s visible Bible study. The way she worded her statements disturbed me. She said it was “because of the children” we should aim at restricting what we watch, listen to, do, say and study. These are ways we can guard our family from the devil’s attacks.
Her post was intended as an encouragement, but as I read it, I felt that old enemy of guilt starting to lay siege to my heart.
“Oh crap! My children are doomed!”
They are plugged in way too much….too much Nintendo DS… too many TV shows… too much time on Wizards 101… and should she even be playing that??! We need to read together more, play more board games. Heck, I should just PLAY with them (ugh). I need to stop yelling re actively, and start shaping pro actively. Did I just ignore them for 2 hours straight?
I began to plan ways to pick up the pace on the race to adolescence. What more can I do to provide the perfectly safe and good environment so that my kids will turn out right? ITS UP TO ME, RIGHT?!
When I get freaked out how bad a mother I am, I meditate on three things:
- God loves my kids more than I do. He can be trusted with their days, their environment and their heart.
- I am a bad mother. But, I’m a redeemed one. Stay humble. Love Him.
- God wants heart change, not behavioral change alone. Change my heart, O Lord. Theirs too! (Matthew 12:33-35 and Matthew 15:8-19)
- Hannah understood her son was a gift to her for a short time. He ultimately belonged to God.
- Hannah knew how to pray. Read 1 Samuel 1: “I prayed for this child…So now I give him to the LORD. For his whole life he will be given over to the LORD.”
- Consider the environment she was sending her son into. Read the last part of 1 Samuel 2.
- Consider WHO guided Samuel’s heart. Read chapter 3.
- Samuel grew up away from his godly mother (but not from her prayers!)… in the presence of “scoundrels,” yet God had special plans for him. GOD wooed Samuel. God will woo my children too.
- And with this childhood, Samuel learned this lesson:“The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 6:7. Even though he lived in the TEMPLE and was surrounded by those dedicated to the Lord’s service, he knew it isn’t the outward show, it’s the heart God sees.
I doubt I’ll escape the guilty feelings about my selfish mothering. I still stress out when I think of them not choosing to follow God when they grow up. I can’t resist laziness. But, God loves them more than I do. I trust Him with their hearts.