My son, if your heart is wise, My own heart also will be glad; And my inmost being will rejoice when your lips speak what is right. Proverbs 23:15-16
It seems only yesterday I began this journey of motherhood. I was a young and foolish woman without God yet I wanted to raise my son's right. "Right" meant to be a good person, live a good life, follow the Golden Rule, don't steal or cheat. I was regenerated when the oldest was a baby but I had no idea then what it meant to truly raise my son's in righteousness.
Our youngest turns 19 today... my how time has flown. It seems that only yesterday he was an infant in my arms. I must have blinked a little too long, because now he joins his brothers in adulthood. On this important day in our family, I look back on how I did as a Mother. What did I get right and what did I get wrong over these past 26 years as I helped raise these 3 boys into men.
Why spend the time to evaluate this on my blog you ask? Because many of you are just starting out; you have babes in arms and you want to hear from someone who has been there and done that so you can avoid the errors I made.
If I had to go back and change anything, it would be (hands down) how I talked to my children about Jesus. Yes, they learned Bible verses and went to Vacation Bible School, and Awana but that wasn't really talking about Jesus. I did not talk enough about His sufficiency, sovereignty or supremacy. I would have taught them to depend on Him more, trust Him more, cry out to Him more. I would have taught them from the moment they were able to understand that He is enough.
I would have taught them about what biblical salvation is. It is not "pray a prayer and ask Jesus into your heart." It is not walking an aisle, raising a hand, or "getting saved." I would have made sure they understood Ephesians 1 and 2. I would have taught them more about sin; specifically their sin. From that foundation I would have taught them about God's marvelous grace.
I never would have pushed any of them to pray a prayer or be baptized. I would not have acted as the Holy Spirit in their lives. I would have trusted God more and worried less about their spiritual condition.
In spite of my failings, God has been faithful to do what He has intended to do in the lives of His children.
I think I did plenty of things right along the way, and this is by His grace! I home schooled them, investing in their lives every day. Those are years that I cherish in my heart. They were by no means easy years, but I do not regret keeping them home and teaching them myself.
Once I learned that it was biblical to do so, I began admitting to my kids when I sinned against them and learned to humble myself by asking their forgiveness.
Our children talked to us, and we listened to them. There was no subject off limits and no question too silly to be asked.
I cooked dinner nearly every night of the week. Going out to eat was a luxury, not a way of life. This was an important thing for our children; they learned the value of family around the dinner table. They knew Mom was always there, and they grew up with a biblical model of family life.
As I think back on all these things I have to say that my heart is full. I am a woman richly blessed by God with a fantastic husband, and wonderful sons. God has added to our family beautiful daughters-in-law and I suspect some day soon there will be more little children in our lives.
Take the time to live the simple life ladies. Cherish each day, raise your children with love and guidance and an understanding of who God truly is. I promise you will not regret it. Oh...and don't blink too long, before you know it they are gone.