"Would you say you were raised in a Christian home, a moral home or some other kind of home?"
This is the question my friend asked her eldest daughter. Of course the answer would be "Christian home" because, after all, I am a Christian and I love Jesus. Right? Is teaching our children right from wrong and taking them to church (most of the time), and making sure they dress modestly, mind their words and manners and keep their eyes from watching filth, perhaps even homeschooling...is that enough?
This question was stuck fast in my brain and I knew it would drive me crazy if I didn't find out the answer, so I decided to ask my daughters, 20, 18 & 16, the question. (I didn't ask my sons because I have not finished, or nearly finished, parenting them yet). I was very nervous. I honestly couldn't be sure what they would say. Like my friend, I wanted my children to love the Lord, but did that desire play out in word and deed in my home?
Now each time I call one of my children they think they might be in trouble for something. I have to announce, "you're not in trouble I just want to ask you a question." Apparently "questions" are just as much to be feared as being in trouble. I asked my 20 year old first. She said she felt she was raised in a Christian home. Why? Because, she said, we always made it a point to get to church and teach them about Jesus at home. We weren't always consistent, but we prayed together. She has seen us read our Bibles on our own and struggle to work out our salvation outside of the church setting.
My 16 year old said she felt she was raised in a moral and Christian home for some of the same reasons but also because, she said, we kept God and Christianity in the things we did and taught them morals. (She's very short, sweet and to the point)
Miss 18 year old, to my surprise (she tends to be my more pessimistic Eeyore type), agreed that she had been raised in a Christian home. She thought for a moment and said that even though we certainly were NOT perfect (emphasis hers!) she could see we were trying to pursue Christ even through the challenges and we encouraged them to seek Him when they were struggling as well. (she did add that she still doesn't agree with everything we did and she may not raise her children just the same...they may get to play video games at a younger age ;)
I was happy to know they think they have been raised in a Christian home and I am THRILLED my grown/nearly grown children are all choosing to follow Christ on their own. I'm not off the hook yet though, I still have 6 chickies left in the nest. I know there have been seasons of existing. There have been seasons of anxiety or other emotional challenges in our home. There have been seasons of feeling empty as a mother or running in my own strength on an empty tank. Sometimes I have been controlling and legalistic in my endeavor to present the Lord to my children. Anything good that has resulted from my mommy-ing is because of the grace of God in my broken little life. The striving and struggling and failing and repenting and standing up again is worth it and I am thankful!
Our salvation consists in faith and hope in the mercy of God, and the devotion of ourselves and all of us to His holy will. -St. Macarius