May 2014 Posts

Children Are Like Arrows?


Behold, children are a gift of the LORD,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior….[1]

This passage is simple but potent.

“Behold, children are a gift of the Lord”

It is so natural in the ebb and flow and chaos of daily living to treat our children as possessions, instead as gifts from a loving and almighty heavenly Father. It is easy to start seeing our children as obstacles to keep us from doing things we want or desire, to see them as annoyances that irritate us and distract us from things we deem more important. But the biblical reminder is children are a gift.

“The fruit of the womb is a reward”

The idea David relates here is that God entrusts His children to their parents. The children belong to Him, but He has gifted them to us for a period of time to accomplish certain things He has designed. It is as if God has contracted parents to participate in the raising of His children. This is a good thing that can get lost as our patience is tested, as our busy lives keep getting interrupted by a cry, a complaint, or another mess that needs to be cleaned up.

“Like arrows in the hand of a warrior”

Arrows were the long-range artillery of the ancient world of war. Sling stones were the intermediate range, and the sword was hand-to-hand combat. But the archers would send arrows deep behind enemy lines where the soldiers could not go. So it is with God’s children that He has entrusted to us for a time. He sees us as warriors in the midst of battle and He wants us to prepare and then send our children far into a future that we will not be a part of.

I read books and hear teachers talking about the world our children live in, and knowing that world is important. But ultimately God has entrusted children to parents so that parents will prepare their children and then send them to a far away, future world to which the parents cannot go. I get concerned that we as parents focus so much on the world of the here and now that we lose sight of the fact that God entrusted us to prepare children for the world of the future, not just the world of the present.

Could I encourage us as parents to stop from time to time, and get away and think about how our children are doing, where they have grown and where each one needs to grow if they are going to be prepared for that future world where we cannot go with them?

How is your son or daughter’s heart? Is it growing more Humbly Submitted to God?

Is their mind being Biblically Formed?

Is the growth in their heart and mind showing up in their choices and compassions?

In the midst of our busy routines, let’s remember: “Behold, children are a gift” – on consignment – arrows to be prepared and sent out with a message and life for a future world.

[1] Psalm 127:3-4 (NASB95)

I Am With You Always


After Jesus commissioned His apostles to make disciples of all nations, He made them an astounding promise: “…I am with you always….”[1]

Look at that promise more carefully. “I am.” Not I will be or I might be or I will try to be. Jesus is making a promise of His “I AM” presence, His abiding presence with us “always.” I remember reading that so many times and thinking of those words as throwaway words, like “see ya later.”

But when Jesus’ promise began to sink in deeper, it reminded me of an experience I had in fifth grade.

Are You a Leader?


In the course of my life I have probably read more than 100 books on leadership, some by Christians, but mostly not. Unfortunately, most of what I read, Christian or not, sounds very similar.

I’ve read things like, you’re a leader if you have a certain type of personality or you have a certain style or you get results or you influence others or you have followers. But what bothered me was that Adolf Hitler seemed to be one person having all those characteristics, and I most definitely don’t aspire to be a leader like him. Surely there is a difference between secular and Christian leaders.

Christian writers on leadership often just say “character” is the important difference for Christian leaders, but this seemed lacking to me as well.

Who Are You?


Where did you come from? What is your ancestry?

When I was a young boy my parents told me a little about my ancestry. My most immediate family came from southern Indiana, but their parents were from the backwoods of Kentucky, and before that my roots go back to the Carolinas. They also told me that I was part Irish/English and part American Indian.

That last part was amazing to me. As kids we would always play Cowboys and Indians, and the Indians were always the enemy, the bad, scary, dangerous guys. Now I know that is not politically correct or even historically right, but as kids in the ‘50s that’s all we heard.

With this new revelation of my ancestry, I found myself reading about American Indian history with a different slant, and I found myself thinking about myself differently as well.