Our Children: The Battle
Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to my amazing wife Jen. Not only is she my better half, and a remarkable stay-at-home-mom, but she also has an incredibly compassionate heart to serve others. Today she shares Part 1 (guest post entitled “Our Children: The Battle“). Be sure to also stay tuned for Part 2 tomorrow. Enjoy!
I’ve heard it said that the more children you have, the more you allow things to inadvertently fall to the wayside: The picture album that was kept up to date begins to make its way out of the desk drawer less and less often, the baby clothes that were freshly folded and new with tags get shoved into the Rubbermaid bins labeled, “Hand-me-downs”, the toys that were sanitized on a fairly regular basis now more closely resemble an obnoxious heap of Toys R Us scrap metal, and the baby milestones that we once regarded as the very things that made the earth turn on its axis, now receive a small smile of admiration and a weak, “Oh, isn’t that nice?”.
I believe we can mostly agree that this dwindling enthusiasm can be labeled as part of human nature. I remember thinking at times during my second pregnancy, “How can I love this baby as much as our first? Will there be enough love, enough attention for both of them?” I remember how amazed I was to actually experience my love multiply with our second baby girl– a miracle that I believe in a small way, mirrors the profound truth that the Lord loves each and every one of His children so passionately and completely. Although the “newness” of being a first time parent may seem to fade slightly with time, there is such great celebration and joy in our hearts as we welcome the birth of each unique member of our family.
Have you ever pondered how much greater the Father and all of the heavenly hosts rejoice at the birth of a child—of YOUR child? Have you ever wondered what it looks like to see God dance? To hear angels sing praises? To feel Heaven move in celebration of just one small baby?
And quite conversely, have you ever stopped to consider the other forces – the ones sent by the Evil one himself, which are unleashed earthward in that same second of birth? With the impending birth of our third child, never before have I been more aware of the battle that rages on over the souls of our children. There are countless Scriptures we can reference that describe the value that the Lord places on our children. Dr. Wess Stafford, leader of Compassion International, candidly describes it as so:
At the moment of birth, all heaven stands in breathless anticipation and breaks into shouts of joy and praise. Each child is born into the world loved and full of potential to bring joy to the heart of God. A little flame flickers deep in the child’s being. It reflects a dignity and worth, made in the image of God Almighty.
Meanwhile, Satan and his evil hosts stand ready to pounce and destroy that life as quickly and completely as possible, knowing how that will break the heart of God. All of heaven and hell are present and focused on the newborn life—for vastly different reasons. Both have strategic designs for this little one. (Too Small to Ignore)
In light of this battle, I believe that God reminds us that we are to:
1. Pray. Lift up our children as consistently and fervently as we can and acknowledge that there are forces at work (evident in the pressures of our society and our own heart conditions) that desire to separate our families from the Lord.
2. Remember that we are equipped. God has provided us with all that we need to train up our children… (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
3. Recognize that our time with our children (or any for that matter) is God-ordained. One smile, act of kindness, or encouraging word, can speak life through generations.
Photo credit: vaaltonen