Have you ever seen a kid on a leash? I will never forget the first time I saw it. A lady was out walking her kid before dinner, I guess.
I will not judge the moms that feel the need to have their kid on a leash. Maybe there are good reasons for it ... I can't think of any.
It appears to me that a leash is easier than disciplining a child's heart. It is as if our kids have become a burden that must be managed. Or brats that need to be indulged.
We need to keep a right view on kids.
A song of ascents. Of Solomon.
(1) Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain.
(2) In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat — for he grants sleep to those he loves.
(3) Sons are a heritage from the LORD, children a reward from him.
(4) Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one's youth.
(5) Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their enemies in the gate.
The foundation of any home is the Lord (verse 1). A family without God can never experience the spiritual bond God brings to relationships. Leaving God out of a home and expecting it to prosper is short-sighted at best. My dad was raising us to be "moral, upstanding atheists" before he came to Christ. After our family submitted to Jesus we experienced a bond we had never known before.
Once the foundation is laid the first level of the home is the marriage relationship. It is so important to not place the kids before the marriage. We came before the kids. Remember the song: first comes love then comes marriage THEN comes a crying baby in a carriage! When you first return from work take 5 minutes of couch time each day. Don't let the kids interrupt that time.
Marriage takes work and communication. Kids are an innocent, natural wedge in this process. Marriage needs to be guarded. If you are single, you also need to guard time alone and time with the Lord to maintain balance.
The second level of the home is children. Too often children are seen as a burden or a nuisance and childhood as a time of life to "get through". It takes too much work and thoughtfulness to raise kids that obey their parents. So, we put them on leashes and in time out.
This is not God's view. Children are a heritage and reward from the Lord. They are our opportunity to see shape the future.
Children that are well trained will be like an arrow in the hand of a warrior. The arrow enables the archer to reach beyond himself. The arrow allows him to silence his enemies.
Children that are well trained will be like a voice in the city gates representing the family well. The city gates were the courts of the day. Key leaders would discuss issues at the gate. These children will be able to contend for their families.
How do you view children? Do you see them as a great opportunity from the Lord to proclaim His name in the future? Do you see them as a key part of your future security?
How well are you guarding your time with your spouse? Are you willing to carve out 5 minutes when you get home today?
Are you taking the child rearing job seriously? Are you willing to do the hard work of discipline and consistency?
Next time you see a parent with a leash on a kid think of how you can pray for them and maybe help them out.
DevoLink: Devotions to help you Link with God.