The Importance of Parenting

Opening Prayer: 

Lord, help us as parents to see the critical role we play in shaping the spiritual lives of our children. As I study your word, show me how to teach and lead my children in a way that honors you. My heart’s desire is that they begin to seek Christ because of seeing Christ in me.

 

Read: Judges 13:2-3, NIV

“A certain man of Zorah, named Manoah, from the clan of the Danites, had a wife who was childless, unable to give birth.  The angel of the Lord appeared to her and said, “You are barren and childless, but you are going to become pregnant and give birth to a son.” 

 

Reflect: 

When Prince William and Kate had their third child, Prince Louis, he was immediately established as the fifth in line to the throne of England. Without any discussion, absent any act of Parliament, Prince Louis was royalty the minute he breathed his first breath. You see he is royalty because of who his parents are. Parents have played key roles in the lives of their children throughout the ages. The Bible is filled with many references to the importance of parents and the role they play in the lives of key figures in scripture: Moses’ mother kept him alive by setting him in a basket floating down the Nile. Later, while leading the children of Israel, his father-in-law shared wisdom with him during a difficult struggle, managing conflict among the many people and tribes of Israel. Samuel’s mother, Hannah, wanted so very desperately to have a child that she promised to give him to the Lord should she become pregnant. I Samuel 1:20 – “So in the course of time Hannah became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”

In today’s story, Manoah’s wife was barren as well. The angel of the Lord appeared to her with great news! She told her that she would have a son!  If an angel appeared to us today, I imagine we would fall on our faces in awe and wonder, paralyzed with shock and amazement! The life of Sampson, her son, will unfold to us during this week’s devotionals. Through our reading, remember Hannah’s first prayers and her acts of obedience and faithfulness! She was literally “sick” about not having children and then, with her one and only son, she gives him back to the Lord…I am not sure I could match Hannah’s obedience in what she did, but she played a vital role in the lives of the Children of Israel.

 

Apply: 

If you are a parent, consider how your life resembles that of Christ and if you truly model Jesus in front of your children. Consider how “your example,” good or bad, will be a seed in the lives of our young people. Do you want to see more grace in the next generation…walk in grace with your children today; do you want to see compassion in the world, show compassion to your kids now. You see, our children will look at the message “you” are sending before they mimic the rest of the world. Yes, the world and the devil seek to consume them, but you have a great opportunity before you today to positively impact them for Jesus Christ! Think about if your kids would start saying…”WWMPD…What would my parent do?”

 

Closing Prayer: 

Lord, parenting is not easy, but it is filled with many blessings and joys along the way. I pray that you would help me live my life in such a way that it would help point my children to Jesus Christ. May they see that my hope and trust is in you. Proverbs 3:5-6 - “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him and he will make your paths straight.”

Terry Schneider