Moms, you know those proud moments when you see your kids excel or hear them say something sweet and you just can hardly contain yourself. It’s so precious when you hear your own words come out of their mouths like when the time a mother took her young son shopping. After a day in the stores, a clerk handed the little boy a lollipop, and the mother said to the boy, “What do you say?” to which he replied, “Charge it!” So precious.
I know firsthand that motherhood is both demanding and rewarding. It is a huge responsibility. I wasn’t sure if I was up to the task. Would I know what to do with these new precious lives? Would I know how to interpret their cries? Would I be able to soothe them? Could I learn what I needed to fast enough to stay maybe two steps ahead of them? Could I keep up with all of the changes they would go through at what seemed like warp speed? Thinking about all that comes your way in a hurry when you are a new mom can be overwhelming for sure.
As I thought about motherhood and reflected back, now that my kids are grown, I think a mother would do well to focus on three main things. Oh, the laundry can’t be forgotten. The lunches still have to be packed. Diapers will still have to be changed. The carpool will still have to run. The check-ups have to be scheduled. The list of “have to’s” for a mom is endless, but perhaps the most important things a mother can do for her children can be boiled down to three things. The three focuses of motherhood that I am going to suggest to you are three focuses for anyone, male or female, who wants to impact a child’s life. If you are a parent, a grandparent, an aunt or uncle, a mentor, a coach, a teacher, I want to suggest three things I think we need to focus on in order to impact the next generation for Christ.
- We need to protect the children of the emerging generation.
There was an amazing mother in the Bible who did what was necessary to protect her infant boy when his life was being threatened. The Egyptian Pharaoh had enslaved the Israelites and when he realized how quickly their population was growing, he feared they would outnumber their captors and be able to overthrow them. So, he ordered the baby boys to be drowned in the Nile River.
Moses’s mother courageously hid him for three months and when she couldn’t hide him any longer, she placed him in a floating basket on the Nile River. Moses’ sister stood watch to see what would become of him. The Pharaoh’s daughter happened upon the baby and took him to be her son. His own mother, according to God’s Sovereign plan, was called upon to nurse him until he was weaned.
Moses’s mother did whatever was necessary to protect him from execution. God raised him up to be the great deliverer of the Israelite nation as he led them out of slavery, out of Egypt.
Sadly, children today need protection even before they take their first breath. They need protection in the womb. In order for a child to become a deliverer, to become a teacher, to become an engineer, to become a doctor, to become an IT specialist, a pastor, or whatever their potential would indicate, they need the opportunity to be born. As we all know, the discussion about life and the value of life that is being held right now in the United States Supreme court is a weighty matter. I didn’t think I would see it even be considered in my lifetime. I am encouraged by the discussion. In many instances, we have elevated choice over life, leaving children in the womb unprotected and in danger.
We need to protect our children by advocating for a culture of life! There is an assassin who is out for your child’s heart, soul, and mind. This assassin wants your child’s potential and future. This assassin wants to confuse your child and create strongholds of anxiety, worry, fear and doubt in your child’s mind. He doesn’t want your child to live with confidence. He doesn’t want your child to fulfill their God-given purpose. His name is Satan. He is always on the prowl, I Peter 5:8. Make sure your child knows they have an enemy, and make sure they know he is already defeated in Jesus’ name. Make sure they understand that they don’t have to cave to his bullying and fall for his traps.
Not only do we need to seek to pray for protection for our kids, but also,
- We need to pray for the children of the emerging generation.
The biblical mother that comes to mind when I think about praying for our kids is Hannah. She prayed for Samuel before he was born in I Samuel 1. She prayed not only to be able to have a child, but she prayed that he would be used in the service of the Lord as he grew. What a strategic prayer to pray! “Lord, use my child for your glory.”
Parents of young children, grandparents who have young grandchildren, did you know you can pray now for someday godly spouses for your kids and grandkids. What you pray now has power to help them find the love of their lives when God’s timing is right. Pray for your children to be anchored to the Word of God and prayer. Pray for them to stay on the righteous path. Pray they have boldness to say “No” to sin. Pray for them to know and follow God’s voice. Pray for them to win their friends to Christ. Ask God to tenderize their hearts and to help them say “Yes” to Jesus from an early age. Ask for God to give them godly mentors and godly friends. Pray they will have a coachable, teachable spirit and be influenced by the right people. Pray they will excel in the development of their gifts and abilities, yes, but pray fervently for the development of their faith. They need daily prayer and as often during the day as possible. They have more coming at them than any previous generation.
We not only need to protect and pray for the emerging generation, but also
- We need to pass on the Christian faith to the children of the emerging generation.
The biblical mother who serves as an example here is Timothy’s mom. Paul said of Timothy in II Timothy 1:5-“I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and I am persuaded, now lives in you also.”
Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is both caught and taught. As we model what it means to be faithful to the Lord, as we are an example of what it is to have faith and to share Christ with others, as we demonstrate a commitment to Christ and the church, those following us will be positively impacted. We need spiritual mothers and fathers to take a personal interest in the young people of this church. They need Christians who know their names and take time to encourage them. They need to hear your testimony of how God saved you, how He delivered you. They need committed children’s and youth volunteers who will teach them about God’s Word and plan for their lives. They need adults they can count on and go to when they need support.
Each of us can take responsibility for protecting and praying for the next generation. Each of us can purpose to pass on the faith to those coming behind us. It will take all of us, doing our part, to mother the next generation. This morning, as we close in prayer, I want you to consider coming to pray specifically for a young person that needs God’s help. If they are here this morning, I invite you to bring them with you.