Tuesday, January 6, 2009

On second thought…

I was thinking about my latest blog, about sheltering my children and keeping them safe in the haven of our home. And as I thought more about it I started to feel a little guilty. I started to wonder if maybe my attitude was a little selfish, maybe even a little controlling. Now the thought of me being controlling might be a little hard for some of my readers to believe…. but probably not any of those who have actually met me.

Anyway, as I pondered my own words, I realized that though it is my duty and my responsibility to protect my children, maybe choosing the people they spend time with is not the best way to teach them Christian values. I thought about the often asked question "what would Jesus do?" Jesus certainly did not surround himself with all the best examples of love and holiness. He did not avoid those people who thought differently or made choices contrary to His beliefs. In fact, He sought out those people in order to spend more time with them! Now I am certainly not going to send my three year old in to do some prison ministry. Or ask my five year old to take a pie over to the house of a registered sex offender but maybe I am being called to trust a little more. I need to trust in myself and the morals I am raising my children with. I need to trust in my children and the values they are already developing and living out. And most importantly, I need to trust in God to protect them and care for them when they are facing situations I wish they weren't.

Rather than spending my time choosing and controlling what my children experience in this world I need to teach them to be good influences to those they encounter. I need to concentrate on allowing them to share their beliefs with others and to be examples of Christ's love and acceptance. I still want our family life to be an example, to my children and others, of the way God wants His people to live. I realize this must include loving others, all others. The world is not perfect. It is not even always child friendly but it is the world God has given us and He is present in it. Therefore, as I reconsider my views on this issue once again, I think I will try harder to find a balance between protecting my children and letting them spread their wings.

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