Sunday, May 2, 2010

{matters of the heart}

so as the light at the end of this tunnel grows brighter, particular aspects of how our life is going to change has been weighing heavy (in a good way) on my heart.

jim has finally returned (YAY!) from his oh-so-long (for us) venture away for home for work...and so we've been spending these past few days just soaking up time with our family of four. yesterday, as we made our "saturday morning trip" to timmies, i thought i'd bring along a devotional we've been reading and if time allowed we'd start up where we'd left off.

i just find it so neat that God continually meets us where we're at if we afford Him the recognition. so many times i've been feeling like i just needed "something" to know that He is there and that the way things are is okay and the way that we're thinking about life is "right"...and so many times i've been met where i'm at with a particular verse...or a comment from a friend...or a devotional reading...and i am encouraged.

yesterday as i opened up this particular devotional, that we hadn't picked up in a few months (let's be honest here), we were met where we're at...and it was encouraging.

i thought i'd take this time to share with you some of the encouragment...


"By faith, Moses' parents hid him for three months after he was born, because...they were not afraid of the king's edict." ~ Hebrews 11:23

By faith Moses' parents hid him from the wrath of Pharaoh. Normally, we think of hiding as cowardly, as an act of fear. But when it comes to our children, hiding them can be a tremendous act of brave faith.

The Bible tells us there is one who seeks our childrens' downfall every bit as Pharaoh sought the death of Moses: the devil, Satan (1 Peter 5:8). As spiritually attuned parents, it is our calling, our duty, and our responsibility to "hide" our children from this nemesis....While some go overboard and focus on Satan too much, most of us moderns probably fall into the other extreme - failing to recognize his schemes or even acknowledge his existence...

The future of God's work on this earth depends on believing children who will speak up with courage, faith and integrity...

And yet, how often do we throw our children into Satan's path unprepared? We assume they'll absorb biblical teaching without any explicit effort on our part to ensure solid theological grounding. We give more thought to how they'll get to school than who is teaching them and what they're being taught. Since we don't guard their associations, we allow them to get together with whomever, wherever, whenever.

In fact, some would say that to even think about hiding our children is to give way to fear and to be overprotective - but when Moses' parents hid him, the biblical writer recounts it as an act of great faith, not fear. Perhaps we've gone too far in the other direction, so fearful of oversheltering our children that we neglect the very real danger that full, unhindered exposure to this world can cause.

We hide our children in spiritually healthy ways by praying for them, by monitoring what and whom they see, and by warning them. The "hiding level" changes, of course, as they mature, but even when they get placed in harm's way, we must give them all they need to confront the enemy of their souls.

Hiding isn't based in fear; it's based in faith

We Christians are blessed with a hiding place refuge that is as beautiful and wonderous as it is secure: the shelter of the Most High, the shadow of the Almighty. We needn't live by fear; on the contrary, because of God's provision we live with the steady confidence that when we do our part, God will do his. For the time will surely come when we can no longer hide our children, when it's no longer appropriate to shelter them, when our children must face the world head-on, with all its temptations and traps.

There is nothing shameful in taking your time to do this unleashing. Andrew Murray encourages parents with this word of advice:

Hide your children in the quietness of home life away from the excitements of the world. In that hiding place where the enemy cannot intrude, we have one of faith's highest duties. When that time comes when your child has to come into contact with the world, you can still entrust her to the One who is the keeper of Israel. Do not fear the sayings of others who proclaim that the children cannot be kept separate from the world, they must go with the stream. Instead, let your faith be strong.

Parents, be vigilent. The world is not a safe place where children can wander unprotected and unwatched...But also be encouraged. When we hide our children in the shelter of the Most High, in the shadows of the Almighty, we need not be afraid.
~Gary Thomas

if you have stuck with me this far, i hope that you've also been encouraged, as i was. knowing the changes that are to come with the dawning of the light at the end of our tunnel, we take courage in this reading.

i encourage you to take some time to think on this...discuss it with your friends...and i welcome any discussion you may have regarding this post.



kelly ens said...

i'm going to read through this a few times and hopefully get some discussion with some friends in the next few days.
thanks for sharing this!

Barley Girl said...

ye yes yes.. I feel so strongly about good christina. so true. love it.

Jody & Melissa said...

Love this post, C. Such good thoughts & extremely challenging... What devotional is it?

Bia said...

Oh, Christina I just found this! Isn't God's timing SO perfect? My heart resonates with what you shared.
May I post a link to this on my blog? More parents need to know this.
God has so many wonderful plans for your family! He will bless you as you obey Him. One step at a time.