Recently, a “friend” on my facebook page posted the following quote from Alice Miller who is an activist against child abuse and mistreatment.
“Wherever I look, I see signs of the commandment to honor ones parents and nowhere of a commandment that calls for the respect of a child." – Alice Miller
I am sorry, but I have to disagree with her statement! I do agree children need to be respected; however, I also KNOW there ARE commandments and verses in my bible which call for the respect of children! Below are some of my favorites. I KNOW there are many more!
- Here is the entire passage on children from Ephesians chapter 6:1-4 (Last verse is emphasized!)
Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth. And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
***Clearly, we are to honor our parents, but our parents are not to provoke us to wrath or cause us anger!***
- Matthew 18 is FULL of scripture about respecting children! Below is Mathew 18:1-6 Again the last verse is emphasized.
At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.
But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and [that] he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
***Very powerful statement! Jesus says the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven are children! Oh, my NOT Parents, but children! AND if you hurt one of these innocent children, it would be better for you to be drowned in the depth of the sea! Sure sounds to me as if children are important and there are statements to justify it!***
- Psalm 127 further emphasizes the importance of children even in the womb! Below is Psalm 127:3-5
Lo, children [are] an heritage of the LORD: [and] the fruit of the womb [is his] reward. As arrows [are] in the hand of a mighty man; so [are] children of the youth. Happy [is] the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.
***Another powerful statement! The fruit of the womb is the reward of God! Wow! I have seven rewards already born and another I am carrying, so eight total rewards from God! AND Happy is the man (person) who has his quiver (house) full of them! They SHALL NOT BE ASHAMED! Whether you have one child or ten children, you should be proud of your reward from God! What a blessing they are! You can be happy with them too! You do not have to be upset! Children are to be a reward and a blessing! If you are not happy, change your attitude and your perspective. Treat your child as a reward and see if it helps to feel better or happier!"***
I am not sharing these scriptures to point fingers or accuse! I realize not everyone has children, not everyone wants children. Even Psalm 113:9 states: “He maketh the barren woman to keep house, [and to be] a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the LORD.” My Granny never had one child of her own, but she was mother to my dad and many other children throughout the years. She was very joyful and always happy and praising the Lord! She was still blessed! I am sharing these things with you to let you know children ARE important people too! Remember you were a child once! If you were not loved and were neglected, did you ever long for someone to love you or to tell you, you ARE important? Even those of us who were loved, still wanted to be important and feel special! All children long to be the apple in his/her parents’ eye! They long to be a delight. I know I do not have your children. Someone once told me that most children are just a product of their everyday surroundings. I agree to some extent. However, I will also say we are all bad from the beginning and when left to ourselves without proper training and nurture will more than likely choose the wrong path. However, many of the attitudes or behaviors our children have they are mimicking from none other than their parents or their friends or teachers! I know! I have mimicked them myself! There are times when I find I sound exactly like my dad! Sometimes it is in a good sense and other times it is not!
It is up to us to “Train our children in the way they should go.” I encourage you to love on your children! I mean love them! Tell them so! Show them! Not so much with expensive gifts! Spend time with them! DO things they love to do whether you like to do them or not! I know in a hectic society it is often difficult to spend time together as a family, but it is possible! Maybe you should cut out some activities! Family together time is very important! Make it a point to have some time together! We have dinner every night together (or most every night unless my husband works over or is out of town). When he is at home on the weekends, we have ALL of our meals together. Even when my husband is NOT home, my children and I always have our meals together! When we have something going on, we try to plan our meal earlier or later so we can still have it together! It takes effort, but it is worth it! There are many other tips for family together time which I plan to share next week. Back to the subject at hand….LOVE YOUR CHILDREN!
One important commandment is to “Love thy neighbor as thyself!” Our child is our neighbor too! If you cannot love your child, then you do not love yourself and vice versa. Remember, our children were not asked to be brought into the world! They are innocent! They do not deserve to be mistreated or not to be loved!
I encourage you this week to find time to spend with your child or children. If it has been a while or they are older, it may be awkward at first. Keep trying! Find something in which they are interested and do it with them! IT may be playing a game of chess on the computer or playing a game of football in the yard. It may be as simple as reading a book or taking them to the park . Just love them and they will return the love to you! You will be happy!
More next week! I hope you have been encouraged and will think differently about the quote I began with above! Children are important and GOD even says so!