Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth.KJV
Lately I have been busy watching a lot of sports. With the current COVID-19 situation in the world, am mostly indoor all the time. With that, I have gotten some creative ways to spend my time.
Well, if am not running around the house, trying to get my rambunctious 3-year-old girl, while changing yet another diaper on our little one, am mostly talking to my husband, mostly.
When I get a minute, my eyes call out for rest. Talk of grind! Motherhood indeed does need grace. All in all, horseback archery, I must say has caught my attention this past few months.
Horseback archery is a fast paced adrenaline ride that blends high speeds with accuracy. If archery wasn’t challenging enough, imagine shooting off targets while controlling a horse galloping faster than 50 kilometers per hour!
Isn’t that insane? I think it is.
As I watched the archers shoot off their targets with such undulated precision, my mind couldn’t help think about parenting. I am a parent and horseback archery perfectly describes how I feel most of the time, or well, how it is!
We live at a time where everything is fast paced. Hyper individualism is at the core of our society, threatening every day to tear down the sacredness of a family. Our children are bombarded with a myriad of sexual images, subliminal or overt, and the world is shouting out loud at them, “choose us!”
The moral decay is at its peak, and the society reeks of it! Almost everything is unfenced and unfiltered.
So many young people have little or no regard at all to the Almighty God, and those who do, have obscured him. He is somewhere at the periphery, consulted only when trouble lingers.
We live at perilous moments. Parenting cannot get anymore intentional than now.
Horseback archers have to muster certain special skills that normal archers do not possess. They will definitely need lots of practice, endurance and grit. Just like horseback archery, parenting has to be done with strength, courage and precision. You and I cannot second guess ourselves.
PARENTING WITH STRENGTH
As the horse back archer is on the horse’s back, he or she will need to harness much strength from within to control the horse’s bit and reins, keep one’s feet on the stirrup, and perfectly seat between the horn and the cantle.
That is a stretch right there, and one more thing, control!
Strength, apart from the physical aspect of it, is the capacity of an object or substance to withstand great force or pressure.
There is no greater time than this, that parenting has been put on the anvil. The pressure is real. Everything in the world says, “give up or give in.”
I heard about “terrible twos” before we had any children. I heard that it’s a tempting phase for any parent. Some give in, too quickly, other give up, others become indifferent. The kind of parenting that says, “whatever.”
Almost every parent I interacted with, had something to say about age ‘two’ that stirred feelings of inadequacies in me. How could such minute beings turn into tormentors?
We soon got our child and two years passed within the blink of an eye. It’s true, by the time they turn two, they have some sort of independence. That independence feeds on their innate sin of individualism as human beings. After all, our children are born with the Adamic sin. Therefore, if a child from the onset get his or her way, without proper correction and guidance, a NO will spur up tantrums.
Proverbs 22:15 says folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him.
Every child is born devoid of the knowledge of good or bad and that is why, parents have been given the God ordained mantle of training up their children in the ways of the Lord.
Such kind of parenting will require you and I to parent with strength. Such kind of parenting will require us to gird our loins. Such kind of parenting will require grit.
This is not a type of parenting that enables a bad character. It does not coddle sin, and neither does it flirt with it. It doesn’t lead like a tyrant in a house, but shepherds a child’s heart. Lest we forget, a shepherd carries a rod and a staff.
A rod is for correction, and a staff guides a stray sheep back to the fold.
Parenting with strength will require you and I, first and foremost to stack our parenting “knowledge” against the wisdom that God gives. We do not know everything. We will never know everything. Fortunately, we serve the All knowing God, who is gracious enough to help when we ask for it!
As much we may read books on parenting, attend seminars and master classes on parenting, only God can turn human hearts, and that includes our little ones. We need to have our identifiers marked right. Our children should see us model out what we are ferociously instilling in them.
Parenting with strength will require a grounded parent, one that stands by his or her decisions that are best for the child. Kids are smart. They read emotions, they interpret signals and can definitely recognize when we are darn serious or joking.
Matthew 5:37 says, But let your yes be yes and No ne No, for whatever is more than these is from the evil one
I think every home, every parent should carry this as an anthem. You will need to be unwavering in your decisions, otherwise if they sense any inconsistencies, you will lose credibility with them, worse, respect.
Parenting with strength will require saying no to certain activities, or programs, that seem to hemorrhage their character. It doesn’t matter if they seem harmless. God has given you the discernment to know that a particular thing, person, or activity is not good for your child’s emotional or spiritual health.
Feelings should not cloud moral and sound judgement, because if you parent from a point of feelings often, then you will be scared to make hard decisions. That spark lit, will burn the whole forest down.
Parenting with strength will require personal evaluation, and personal disciplines such as prayer, meditation on God’s word, so as to build your inner man. The stronger the inner man, the more control he has over the flesh. This is the fruit of the Spirit, self-control.
See, one cannot parent without self-control. It’s very easy to snap right back at child who isn’t listening. It’s easy to shout and yell, but I am sure that’s not how God wants us to parent our children. We are the adults, they are the children and they will follow our example. If are out of control, they will definitely be.
We need to be intentional in seeking the Lord’s face, so as to display whom we have been in communion with. The bigger the Lord is in our lives as parents, the more glorious He will be through their lives.
We are saved to make God look more glorious, we are blessed to make God look very satisfying and we are kept in His grace, to make God look worthy. That is what we should exemplify to our children.
Like pressure pressing hard on coal till it turns into diamonds, so should our parenting be.
The pressure shouldn’t have us, instead, it should purify us to be mettle. With grit yet full of conscious grace.