“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”Proverbs 22:6
For those of us who are parents, we have a duty to “train up” our children in the ways of the Lord.
After my husband and I made the decision together for me to stay home and raise our children, I truly struggled with feeling like I was “just a stay at home mom”. I felt as though my identity had been lost. Then, in early 2013, I began attending a Bible Study with a group of women that I did not know very well. We began sharing a little about ourselves when one woman stated that she was a stay at home mom but, more than that, she was ‘raising warriors’. That statement had a profound impact on me…She was raising warriors…I am raising warriors.
We who are blessed to be raising children are Warrior Raisers.
And what’s even more profound — they are not ours, they belong to God.
As Hannah said in 1 Samuel 1:27-28, “I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord…” (NIV) Other versions say that Hannah “lent” him to the Lord, and in Hebrew, that word is “sha’al,” which means that she “borrowed” him from the Lord.
Our babies are our responsibility to train up — to raise as warriors for the Kingdom of God — but they ultimately belong to our Heavenly Father. Rest in the truth that your children are the Lord’s and He loves them even more than you do and you never parent alone; He comes alongside you in every step of your parenting journey.
Genesis 1:28 says, “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” (KJV)
The Message Bible says it this way, “And God wanted good to come to them, saying, “Give birth to many. Grow in number. Fill the earth and rule over it. Rule over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
This means that God wants good to come to you… through your children.
Psalm 127:3-5 says, “Children are indeed a heritage from the LORD, and the fruit of the womb is His reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are children born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. He will not be put to shame when he confronts the enemies at the gate.” (Berean Study Bible)
If you are a parent, or would ever like to become one, know this — the most precious thing that God will ever entrust — or lend — to you are your children; they are a gift, they are His, and they are His reward. The greatest responsibility and potential for your legacy and impact on this world are your children.
When the Word says, “Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,” your children are those very arrows.
An arrow is something that is to be launched and sent.
An arrow needs a clear target.
Arrows have purpose.
And lean in to the knowledge that if/when you lose sight of the target, or how to direct your arrow, God will come alongside you and equip you with enough wisdom and grace to parent with a purpose.
Then once you release your arrow, you pray that all the training you’ve provided will allow them to be headed toward the target that the Lord has prepared for them — because nothing is more perfect then seeing them live in the center of God’s will.
To all my fellow Warrior Raisers: Aim your Arrows well.