As soon as she woke up this morning, her boots were on and she was headed out the door. It was very important to her that she fulfilled her Daddy’s instructions about her chicken chores. He was out of town, and he told each child which jobs were theirs. She was eager to begin, meticulous to perform each step, and absolutely filled with joy when she finished.
In that moment, God allowed me to see a glimpse of the work He was performing in my little girl’s life. He has been revealing areas where she needs to grow and giving us strength to consistently teach and pray. Now, right before my eyes in the middle of chicken chores, He was showing me how He is healing her. As we commit our children to God, He reveals things in their life so that we can witness the healing. He already knows what amazing works He is completing, the revealing is for our sake. If we are never aware of specific areas that our children need to mature or grow in, we will miss out. When we spend so much time with them, it is tempting to believe that we know them completely. However, God longs for us to ask Him to reveal specific areas in their lives that we need to be interceding for. He knows it will excite our faith and show His glory, when He heals what He has revealed.
While general prayers are good, we leave the time having offered up our words, not expecting anything. Specific prayers require an increased level of faith. It keeps us at the feet of Jesus. We remain pressed into Him, believing He will answer. Watching for the answer. It is in that waiting and watching that we are prepared to witness His hand of healing.
As parents we feel an urgency to pass along as many instructions as we can. While it is important to teach our children, we will miss their hearts, when we focus solely on the daily to-dos. Hearts are not cultivated by behavior that is repeated without genuine, godly transformation. We’re already tired with so many tasks on our list, that we rate our day or our parenting skills on whether or not our children performed their end of the bargain to meet our expectations. Biblical success is not rated by performance. Godly children are not raised by checking boxes on an achievement chart.
While it is important to teach our children, we will miss their hearts, when we focus solely on the daily to-dos. Hearts are not cultivated by behavior that is repeated without genuine, godly transformation.
Some of my most successful parenting days have often been my longest, most challenging days. There was no perfect behavior to speak of. In fact, I probably stayed home because I knew behavior was less than stellar. But, on those days, hearts were changed. Repentance was genuine. God revealed areas of sin so we could all experience the sweetness of healing.
The promises of life for obedience are not meant to build our self-confidence. They’re meant to make us long for obedience and then, when we fail again, they’re meant to crush us and drive us to Christ.
Elyse M. Fitzpatrick, “Give Them Grace”
When we are praying specifically for our children, we can celebrate their obedience. Not because it builds our confidence but because it is a mark of God’s healing. A healed heart produces obedience out of their love for the One who rescues. In the same way, on days of disobedience, we do not have to be depressed in the lie of failed parenting. We still rejoice because or children are being driven to the heart of God.
He reveals so we can experience the transformation of His healing…