Dearest Mothers and Daughters,
I will post section #2 on "Mother" next time, but I had to share this with you today as I was inspired by a picture my dear husband showed me earlier today. It is the picture you see on this post. My husband said to me, "How would you like to see something like that coming at you?" as I looked at the picture I said "I did!"
Yes, that picture immediately took me back, I was there in my mind, 17 years ago. We were living on a little farm in North/West Illinois and I was with my two youngest children at the time 10 and 8 year olds. We were busy in the back garden, hoeing and weeding and planting, It was a beautiful day with blue sky, warm breezes and each of us were busy doing our own project, being across the expanse of our medium/large size garden. Looking to the North was our neighbors property, a vast expanse of field, as far as the eyes could see, farm country you know, and it was early Summer and the crops were just beginning to show green sprouts. We were having a wonderful time, singing as we worked and praising Jesus Christ, as is our custom in all we do. We had been out for over an hour when I stood up from my work and looked North, my heart stood still, it was surreal I had seen things like that in videos but never first hand, it was a rolling wall of cloud as high as a mountain (or so it seemed) full of brown dirt and debris rolling in the distance right towards us! I dropped my garden tool and yelled "RUN!!!" my children followed my lead, didn't stop and ask any questions but obey instantly. We made it to the house just in time and just as we closed the porch door, branches, dirt and stones hit the door and house with such force it was remarkable. We ran around inside the house closing windows as the dust began to enter through them, the sky became as dark as night and we just watched out our windows, amazed at what was taking place, thanking God for His protection and praying safety for our neighbors. It lasted a good 10 minutes, yes a very large dust storm, after it passed we found such a mess outside, yet all was well, our neighbors were safe, we were safe and things soon went back to normal, praise to Jesus!
This story made me think about the obedience of my two youngest children, they obeyed instantly. How did this happen? Why didn't they just look at me and say "Why?" or decide to ignore my words and do their own thing? It was instant obedience, I didn't see them stop and turn their heads, they just began running on the command! I can answer that question, it was training. Ever since they were small I taught them to obey on command. There were numerous stories I had shared with them of how obedience to parents had saved children from death, I also taught them God's Word in which He commands children to obey their parents in the Lord. "Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth."(Ephesians 6:1-3)
Sometimes we practiced instant obedience in creating a scenario in which something threatening was about to happen and when they obeyed it kept them safe. There are many creative ways to teach your children, ask God for wisdom! I taught them in love because love is the way to win the hearts of your children... God's love, genuine love, true love which takes time, interest and work. I taught them the Bible, I read His word to them, we had many talks about what God teaches in His word. I taught them the truth of the cross, what Jesus has done for us and of His death and resurrection. I taught them to keep thanking God and praising God in and for all things. We didn't watch t.v. we rarely watched a movie or played video games and my two youngest children were rarely bored! Life was busy and exciting.
After having said all that, I know there were many things that I did do and didn't do in which I regret... I wasn't perfect that is certain, but I do praise God for the insight He had given me in those early years of their lives, and time spent with them to teach, train and bond is cherished.
Where are they now? My 10 year old daughter has grown into a beautiful women, married and with children and she and her husband are lovers of Jesus, training thier children now for Him and His glory. My 8 year old son is grown and in college training to be a missionary in China, he has been in China twice and feels called of God to serve Him there, he loves Jesus so much and I love conversations over the phone with him since his main subject line is Jesus' love and being filled with His Spirit.
Investing holy time into the lives of our children reaps a beautiful harvest to the glory of God. Our children belong to Jesus Christ- teach, train and point them to Him- you will never, never regret it.
In His love,