The battle of a parent
As each child braved their first steps, my husband and I were there to cheer them on, to help if they fell, and to make sure obstacles in their path did them no harm. As our children grew up, we continued to watch out for them. I remember the first ‘boyfriend’ Rachel had. I barely knew they boy’s name before Gary found out who his parents were, where they worked, and what kind of reputation the family had. O, the things we do as parents to protect and care for our children!
Two of our children are out on their own and one is in college. Though this Momma would love to be out there smoothing their way and making sure they don’t get hurt, my place is not there anymore. Instead of running after them and their busy schedules like I did when they were in school, my place is now on my knees. For this reason, a passage in Nehemiah struck a chord in this Mom’s heart. Whether our children are infants, teens, or adults, this passage is for all the Moms, Dads, Grandparents, etc.
The work on Jerusalem’s wall was moving full steam ahead but many living near the Jews were displeased. They began to ridicule the work calling it hopeless and shoddy but the work continued. Next they made threats of attacking and killing the Jews.
Nehemiah, a wise leader, took note of the threats and responded all while the work continued.
Guards were posted and the men began to work with a sword in one hand and building material in the other. Behind the lowest and most vulnerable parts of the wall, Nehemiah took special care.
“Therefore I stationed some of the people behind the lowest points of the wall at the exposed places, posting them by families, with their swords, spears, and bows. After I looked things over, I stood up and said to the nobles, the officials, and the rest of the people, ‘Don’t be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your homes.’” Nehemiah 4: 13-14
Parents, our children are in exposed and vulnerable places whether they be 5, 15, or 25! Satan is like a shark in a feeding frenzy as he works through the influences of our culture to destroy our children. He hits their self-image, he offers the temporary pleasures of sex and drugs, he sets their sights on accumulating stuff and success, he paints Christianity as narrow-minded and intolerant so they will question if God is real and teach them to see all religions as alternative routes to heaven.
As their families and loved ones, we have been placed behind them to fight for them. Our ‘swords, spears, and bows’ are prayer and the Word of God. The question to us is- will we fight for our sons and daughters on our knees? Looking back, I know I often failed to fight as I should have when they were young. I let the demands of motherhood and work keep me from battling as I should have on my knees. Young parents please don’t miss the privilege of entering the battle while your children are young!
Lord, thank you for bringing this passage to life in this Mom’s heart hundreds of years after Nehemiah wrote it. Show me how to better fight on my knees! Let me to not grow weary or discouraged as the years pass! Strengthen other parents for the battle! Amen