17 “Please, Lord, prove that your power is as great as you have claimed. For you said, 18 ‘The Lord is slow to anger and filled with unfailing love, forgiving every kind of sin and rebellion. But he does not excuse the guilty. He lays the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected—even children in the third and fourth generations.’ 19 In keeping with your magnificent, unfailing love, please pardon the sins of this people, just as you have forgiven them ever since they left Egypt.”
20 Then the Lord said, “I will pardon them as you have requested.
Perhaps you have perfect kids.
Yay for you!
Perhaps you have been the perfect parent.
My children are imperfect….and so am I.
23 For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.
I’ve been training our children for over 16 years. Some days my heart is overflowing with love for them. Some days I wanna deliver a knock out punch to all four! And some days I hang lifelessly against the ropes, bruised and bloody from the fight.
12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
Besides the relationship with my groom, there has been no greater opportunity for me to know the power of the Lord than in my role as mother.
Sadly, I must confess:
I haven’t always been slow to anger.
I haven’t always been filled with unfailing love.
I haven’t always forgiven our children’s sin and rebellion against me.
And sometimes, I’ve excused their guilt:
“Oh, that’s just ‘typical’ growing pains.”
“At least our kids aren’t as bad as so-and-so’s.”
“I did the same stupid thing when I was that age.”
“Ya know what? I’m sick and tired. I don’t wanna deal with them right now!”
The truth is: God knows our children are imperfect. That’s why He sent His Son. God also knows that I am imperfect. That’s why His Son died for me too. And in His magnificent, unfailing love, He has graciously given me the power of His Spirit to draw me into repentance so that I can love Him… and love our children.
This year we’ll have 3 teenager girls residing in our home. I’ve heard it said that these can be “tumultuous” years. Perhaps that’s because its evident that children between the ages of 13-18 seem to be wandering in the desert. Perhaps that’s because their rebellious behavior is more expressive than it was during their primary years. Perhaps that’s because the sins of their parents is greatly affecting their lives. Perhaps that’s because they’re tired of following the leader (Moses) and they’d prefer to grumble and go their own way (Miriam & Aaron). Perhaps that’s because they want to worship the golden calves of the world instead of submitting to the One who beckons them to surrender all to Him.
Whatever the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, or the pride of life, their Heavenly Father will pardon them when they repent. And He will lead them into a land flowing with milk and honey if they trust and follow Him. For He knew them before He created them in my womb. He knows the plans He has for them. After all, they are His children and He loves them far greater than I do.