Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman stays awake in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows; for so He gives His beloved sleep. Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; they shall not be ashamed, but shall speak with their enemies in the gate. (A Song of Ascents. Of Solomon. Psalm 127)
Unless The Lord Builds The House
Elizabeth Stone said it best. “Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.” A child does not have a choice to be born but a man and woman have a choice to bring a child into the world. Anyone can be a father or mother but the challenge is learning how to be a parent. The greater challenge is learning how to be a parent in the pattern set forth by God. There is a difference of those who seek to parent their children with the guiding hand of the Creator and those who raise children much like raising chickens – feeding and watering and letting them scratch out a living. Parenting in the present is no different than parenting has been since the beginning of time. In Genesis 3 Satan destroyed the happiness of Adam and Eve as husband and wife. In Genesis 4 Satan destroyed the happiness of Adam and Eve as parents. He continues to destroy families.
The only way we can know the proper way to interact with our children and be the kind of parents God designed the home to be is to let His words guide our minds and actions. If the Lord is not the center of the universe in the home the parents will fail. Parents who try to train their children without a firm basis of godly principles will not succeed. In our modern world the television, computer and smart phone have become the high tech idols that husbands, wives, fathers, mothers and children cannot get their faces away from neglecting the basic needs of human contact, interest and communication. Facebook has taken away face time with family. We do not look at one another anymore because we are glued to tiny screens. Children are a heritage of the Lord and that legacy is being lost to the wiles of the high tech influence of carnal knowledge.
The real challenge of parenting is to realize it only happens one time. There are no do-overs and second chances. This building project cannot be torn down and built again. It can be repaired but the structure built through life will always be a part of the final design. The word of God must be a daily part of the home in establishing the voice of the Lord as the guiding influence. His word must be the open book that children learn to read and listen to in forming their lives. Prayer shows the children the need to talk to the Heavenly Father. Worshiping together in accordance with the will of God teaches children the devotion of obeying God. The most important gift we can give our children is the gift of God. Teaching our children about the Lord is to guide their hearts to fall in love with who He is, what He is and why He created us. Children must be taught to be in love with God. It is easy to teach them words but words without love is empty.
The wise man reminds us to train up our children in the way they should go and when they get older they will not depart from it. This can only be done when we are going that way ourselves. Children are very smart to know the hypocrisy we fill our lives with and they will grow up to be like us in spite of what we tell them. Giving them an example of righteousness and truth will help mold their character to be like that of God because they see God in us. Unless the Lord builds the home we are wasting our time – and eternity will be measured by our actions. Now is the day of salvation for our children. Today is the day to put the Lord God in the center of our home.