Today is an exciting time to be raising children. Today’s child is more confident, more of a global thinker, and more creative than ever before. Children today understand tolerance, that it takes all kinds to make the world go around, and that we have to coexist in order to make that world turn better. They understand that our earth is a gift, not to be taken advantage of, and that we need to care for God’s creations because it may not be there when we wake up. Children today are fast paced thinkers, risk takers, movers, and shakers.
On the other hand, it is a very scary time to be raising children. Children today are also being taught that they should do what feels good and not what they are suppose to do, that their own happiness is most important...creating a very ME society, life should be fun 24/7, that sacrifice and hard work are not necessary to get what one wants, and that biblical values are outdated and backwards. They are constantly being bombarded with images of kids lying and cheating to the background of a laughing track, young ladies/men on Spring Break having sex with as many people as possible (they tend to edit out the mental and emotional breakdowns that result from this type of behavior, the STDs, and the unplanned pregnancies), and images of beautiful teenagers telling their own parents to F*** off because they didn’t get a brand new Mercedes for their Sweet 16. Today’s technology makes children vulnerable to predators and ideas that they are not good enough, resulting in anxiety that requires the over medication of our kids. And, we as parents are overworked, overwhelmed, and plain old tired as we unknowingly allow these images to creep into our homes and allow the technology for instant access to our children.
As a parent, how do I compete? How can I possible influence my children to do what is right, when I have some pretty heavy competition telling them to do what they want. Meanwhile my insecurities are sooooo good at reminding me how VERY flawed I am myself. They tell me I could never be a good parent. Insecurities are straight from hell.
For me, the answer comes in a spiritual form by turning to God, by making a commitment with Darren before the Lord to submit my children to God's will and to raise my children according to God's Word and God's ways. And I’m not going to lie…it AIN”T easy (for me anyway). I pretty much struggle minute to minute. But God had given me some pretty powerful tools. He has given me prayer, the Bible, family, friends, and the church.
Sunday was Carlee Anne’s Baby Dedication at church and it was really beautiful. What is more innocent than bringing a precious baby to the front of the church, with her big brother, while we all make a promise to the Lord to do everything within our power to raise her in a Godly way, prayerfully until she can make a decision on her own to follow God? This dedication transcends all political, background, economic, race division going on in the world today. It is God’s design that we all become a village in raising our children in the way that they should go. I love that and I love that I am not alone in raising Connor and Carlee. I almost required everyone in that church to sign a legal and binding contract, after all it is a scary world, but then I remembered to have Faith and hold fast.
To my family, friends, and church family: we love you, we need you, and we are so Blessed to have you. Thank you for always being there for us.
*My very best friend J. who is so very beautiful, creative, a true sister in Christ, and can wear a fashionable hat so well :) took these photographs for me.
|Look at this angel (I've waited six long years to put a bow in someones hair).|
|She loves her Mema.|
|Family= Rich Blessings|
|Our Pastor- loving, new, and proud father to Ms. A and an amazing man of God|
|I pray that God Blesses us with a special and beautiful relationship.|
And she (Hannah) made a vow, saying, "O LORD Almighty, if you will only look upon your servant's misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the LORD for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head." 1 Samuel 1:11 (NIV)
When God answered Hannah's prayer by giving her a son, she remembered her vow:
"As surely as you live, my lord, I am the woman who stood here beside you praying to the LORD. 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." And he worshiped the LORD there. 1 Samuel 1:26-28 (NIV)