It is difficult at times to look at such a blessing in our lives such as children and think of them as weapons. As Christians, we know we are at war. We know God has given each of us gifts to use for His glory and for the expansion of the Gospel. For example, Love would be one of those gifts we can use as a weapon in the war against the world which burns in hatred; therefore, we show God’s love to the world. The weapon of love is used to battle the spiritual forces in this world that desire nothing more than to watch the world destroyed through hatred of one another. We can then advance the Gospel of Christ into the world by utilizing one of our weapons- the love of God. There are so many other weapons that God has equipped us for war.
With this said, I want to look at one of the most powerful weapons we have to combat the spiritual forces around us – our children. As adoptive parents waiting for our children to come home from Haiti (4 years now); God has not called us to be just waiting but preparing; preparing for war. We understand that although our wait has been a battle in itself, the war wages on and will continue long after our children come home. Our preparation comes in the fact that once they are home with us, pure discipleship begins. We know our children are weapons we will have to forge in the advancement of the Gospel of Christ in this spiritual war. This is precious time as we are not here forever but for a blink of an eye and the time raising children is just as fast.
So, we are called to nurture and prepare our children ultimately for war. Some of the words to describe “nurture” are encourage, develop, and support. Nurturing is action. We encourage and help our children to develop the good gifts God has given to them. These attributes are then forged into weapons for the advancement of the Gospel. Although we may fall on the battlefield, they will pick up the banner where we leave it and fight on. People may call this a legacy but whatever the wordage may be, we will mold, cultivate, and develop our children into warriors.
This world is cold, unloving, scary, cruel, vast, daunting-for a few descriptors of it. We need to, as Proverbs 22:6 states, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” I’ve been in some serious battles throughout my 40 something years of life. I thank God almost daily for a father who raised his son knowing the battle would not end with him but that the war wages on well after he is gone. See, this war has been waging since Adam sinned in the garden and the war will continue until Christ returns for His Bride. We need to raise our children with warrior’s hearts and undying spirits in the face of this blood thirsty world. The same world that put Jesus on the cross and denied Him.
We cannot put blinders on our children and shelter them in the thought that we can protect them. The truth is that we cannot fully shelter our children from the woes of this world, only Jesus can do that! Train up your children in the ways of spiritual warfare and when they are old, they will fight valiantly for the glory of God! Some may fall away and may seem to forsake all but take heart, God is good all the time and your efforts will not be for nothing. God says in Proverbs 24:16 “for the righteous falls seven times and rises again…” So we read that the righteous have times of struggle and faltering but will never be destroyed. We fight on and we need to teach our children to also stay encouraged and fight on. This adoption has certainly been one of the battles in the war that we’ve struggled and fallen but most importantly, been raised only by the power and grace of God. Allow your children to see you struggle and let them see you rise again but most importantly, let them see you praising the Savior through all of it. They will soon understand that while this world can win some battles, it will never win the war and God is to be praised through it all. Always keep in mind that our children are precious weapons forged on the battle lines that God will use at His timing and in His purpose with His engrained gifts for the advancement of the Gospel to the glory of His name. You are called for this purpose as parents…the time is now more than ever! The war wages on.