As many parents can attest, it is not easy to raise faithful children in this fallen world. We pray for them, we read the Bible to them, and memorize scripture with them. We take them to small group, youth group, AWANA, church camp. And we wonder….. is it enough? Is there some formula that if we follow it our children will grow to be people who love and serve Jesus?
In her book, “Mere Motherhood”, Cindy Rollins writes:
“It seemed that I had worked passionately for nineteen years on a beautiful product and, in the end, he had become something entirely different than I intended. I did not recognize him at all. How could I go on creating beautiful pottery pieces if they weren’t going to turn out as I had intended or hoped? Until one day I had an epiphany. I was not the potter. A potter was shaping my children, but it was not me. . .My son was not my product. He was the work of a great artist: the Creator of all.”
Our children are not our product and no, there isn’t a formula. And the responsibility is not ours alone to carry as their parents. Our children will have a crisis of faith. They should experience a crisis of faith. During those years when they have one foot in childhood and one in adulthood are critical times in a person’s faith. These young adults must continue to hear the Truth spoken to them. They need to doubt and know that God can handle their doubt. They need to mess up and know that their Savior still loves them. They need experiences to help them fully understand all the lessons they have hidden in their heart since childhood.
My prayer is for each of my children to have those experiences that grow their faith. To do so they must go. Go outside our home and outside our home church. They need to see the world as Jesus sees it: fallen and worthy of love. They need to take hold of a personal relationship with Jesus. I pray and encourage my newly adult children to complete a YWAM Discipleship Training School. To plant their feet firmly on a foundation of faith that is truly their own. To pursue God in any situation from any corner of the world. I pray they can quiet the noise of the world’s culture and hear God’s call to their life and how He wants to use each one of His children to His glory.
In the meantime we parents can have peace and know that our children are only on loan to us from God the Creator. It is he who it is who is forming our children as vessels for His use. We can rely on the wisdom of God’s Holy Spirit to guide us.