2 Little Girls and Jesus

“Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6

My little girls are 4 and 3. I’ve only just began this thing we call ‘raising kids’. There haven’t been many circumstances I’ve had to put much wisdom in to making decisions regarding their care. My doctor told me on the day I was released from the hospital with my oldest daughter..’She will raise you.’..and she was right. I’ve never known a greater fear than on the day I was riding home from the hospital with that 6lb little girl. The reality that I had absolutely no control in this life began to sink in. On that car ride I suddenly became aware of all the things I couldn’t protect her from. I sang ‘Learning to Lean’ to her that day. It became my prayer. “Father, teach me to lean on you. I don’t control this world and what circumstances it sometimes offers us, but you do. Help me to trust you.” I’ve prayed for wisdom every day since to be the best mother I can be for those little girls. I’ve made a few mistakes and will make a few more in the future, but I’m learning.

This past weekend I had an opportunity to speak with a friend about education and schooling preferences. He prefers his children to be homeschooled when that time comes. I don’t. I prefer the public school system. This concept seemed to trouble him. He even stated, respectfully, “If public schooling is the best you can do for your children, ok, but if there are better options available I don’t understand why you would choose a public school.” I didn’t have the opportunity at the time to go into my reasons, but my preference for public schools isn’t something I just casually decided. I began praying and thinking about such things before my children were ever born. After that question was posed to me I prayed again, and I am still confident in my decision.

I don’t feel one certain system of education is completely wrong anymore than I feel one is completely right. My best friend was homeschooled and she’s an amazing person today. My niece attends a private Christian school, and this month she was her county’s student of the month. She’s a smart, well rounded little girl and I’m proud of her. I don’t recommend one over the other, but for my children, I choose the public school system. I feel there are positives and negatives with any decision. Those attending a school in a setting with other children may have better opportunities for socialization, and therefore, may fair better in society as a whole. But, then again, our public schools have been consistently reprimanded for allowing any form of Jesus in their classrooms. Prayer is no longer welcomed. Our nation has recently suffered horrible tragedies with our public school classrooms as its center stage. And whereas Christian schools allow Jesus to be confessed, there is no more assurance that these tragedies won’t occur there than in a public school setting. I’ve witnessed children go to privatized Christian schools and make awesome Christians as adults, but the same can be said for children who were raised in public schools. I’ve also witnessed others in both school systems turn their back completely on Jesus.

Even still the question was asked… “Why do you choose public schools?” So, for me personally, these are my reasons.

I want my little girls to choose Jesus. I want them to be raised in a society that gives them the opportunity to question who and why they believe the way they do. I want them to understand that there are other religions with people, much more zealous than most Christians, over a different god. I want them to come into contact with friends that don’t know about Jesus, and then question why they don’t talk the way others do. I want them to be associated with the ‘world’. Now in saying this, please don’t feel I’m leaving my girls to find their own way in life. Not at all. I take my children to church and we read bedtime devotions at night. I’m teaching them how to pray, and they pray every night that they are with me. Not so long ago my oldest daughter prayed and asked Jesus into her heart. We talk about Him and my girls tell me they love Him.

But I also believe that one day, not in the terribly far away future, my girls will have to make a decision about what they believe, and they will begin to be held accountable for their decision. My heart’s prayer is that they choose Jesus, but I want that decision to be theirs. I want them to know who they believe. I want them to choose Jesus because they have had a personal encounter with Him, not because Mama kept them in a bubble and they chose Jesus because they were supposed to. I truly believe that God can reveal Himself to my children; I believe He will make Himself real to my girls. I’m going to do my absolute best to train them the way they are supposed to go, and trust that when they are older they won’t depart from it.

I went to public school. I don’t think my parents necessarily chose it over other alternatives, mainly because there weren’t any. I was faced with many different things but grace found me and at 13 I was radically saved. I encountered Jesus. I had the opportunity to drink, to do drugs, to have sex, but I chose Jesus. I went to college and I elected to study world religions, and today I am still interested in other belief systems. In college I became friends with Mormons, atheist, and other individuals who were just pure heathens. I asked hard questions as to why we as Christians choose to follow Jesus. But I always chose Jesus because I have a relationship with my Savior. I pray my girls a measure of grace so that maybe life will be kind to them, but there is a very real possibility that life may be cruel. They may make all the right decisions only to have their world crumble around them. And if that should happen, I want their relationship that they have built with Jesus Christ to be enough to sustain them. I want them to choose Jesus. Because, if they only follow after Him because of what they have seen, they could fall away…but let them truly encounter Him, learn of Him, question why concerning Him, let them know Him…and God will keep them.

“For that which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.” 2Timothy 1:12

I have committed my little girls into the precious hand of Jesus Christ, and I believe that He is able to keep them.

Author: Britney Wilkes
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Published in: on February 4, 2013 at 10:02 pm  Leave a Comment  

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