“Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” Proverbs 22:6 NIV
Fruits of my labor show up in specific areas of my life. The most obvious one seems to be in how my children turned out, their children, even those not yet born.
Proper tending to, and regular watering yields good fruit. When Jesus spoke of “Good fruit” He was talking about people’s internal soul, spiritual character. To produce a good crop one must work the field. Hands get dirty when we work fields, get can rough, and sometimes you sweat. To produce good fruit you have to exert energy both physically and spiritually,
Another thing, expecting something good to come out of something you’ve neglected is wishful thinking at best.
Children can be compared to crops, fields, and gardens; they need tending too, spiritual water and nourishing food to grow. They are fruits of my labor and yours. Like soil that produces fruit, and vegetation our children need somebody willing to work on them. To raise up physically, emotionally, and spiritually healthy offspring we must engage, work on and with them constantly.
In fact, a living parents job is never done. Once I heard a late uncle say, “no matter how old you get I’ll still be (30) years older than you. My uncle’s statement provoked me to look at the big picture of “a parent’s job.”
In my uncle’s own wise but sarcastic way, he was saying that kids will always be kids to their parents. More importantly, my uncle was reminding me to never disrespect him no matter how old I got. Being fruit of my parent’s labor disrespecting elders was not in my nature. I am the product of parents who did not tolerate disrespect, disobedience or laziness.
To see a reward in the fruits of my labor I must work hard. Satan tries to convince us otherwise; he wants mothers and fathers to forfeit parental responsibility, and leave God’s children to their own devices. We see evidence of this every minute of the day, and it’s heartbreaking.
Don’t let Satan fool you. Try your best to sow good seed during your lifetime, individually as well as through your children. That way, when your life is over, the Lord will say “well done my child.”
Like most of us, children won’t always do what we tell them to, as a child or as an adult.
Sometimes, the only option parents have to enjoy peace of mind is believing God for what He said He would do. Having faith is the only way to carry out this mission.
Raising a child up in the way he should go? The task at hand is to do it even when signs of resistance arise. The idea is, “one day he or she will remember what you taught them, how they were raised, and how you behaved as an adult.
Parents are the most powerful example in the world of what a child will eventually end up being? Let’s face it. Most parents can take credit for modeling behavior most children wind up imitating. Parents also inadvertently formulate words and conversations in the mouths of their offspring.
I don’t know about you, but the last thing I want on my conscience is feeling responsible for my child’s major failures. Making mistakes is a given, knowing how to avoid repeating the same mistakes is a different thing. A fool doesn’t know he’s a fool, but other people do. A child may not know his actions are foolish, unless he or she can compare foolishness to outcomes resulting from making good decisions. That’s where mothers and fathers come in. A parent’s most important assignment is “raising a child up in the way he should go is the way to go!”
My grandmother used to say, “when a mother is rocking her baby she doesn’t know if she’s rocking a blessing or a curse.” While some parents believe in error that status, fame or fortune can define a child’s destiny, believers know this is not the case.
The flourishing of sin is the product of neglected fields, fruits of contaminated water, seed hastily sown. God wants us to take our time planting His seeds, put them in the ground right, so they grow and multiply. To grow and multiply, seeds must take root. To take root they need water, and again, they must be tended too.
The Lord wants us to reap good things. “To do that, we must do a better job selecting seed, determining placement, watering crops on a regular basis. And, the water needs to be fresh, pure, free of contaminates.