Thursday, August 12, 2010

Parenting: A Preparing & Purity Parallel

It has been nearly a year since we threw a huge party in our yard. Preparing for Kayla and Andrew's wedding consumed my time and attention for eight months prior to the party, and the joys of the party have lingered over the course of this year as we (my husband and I) have watched their union grow and develop, and as we have seen the Lord working in their lives.

The fact that the Lord designed marriage to be a physical picture of a spiritual reality brings a sense of wonder, and an invitation to meditate on the message(s) that He desires for us to have...

I mentioned eight months of preparation, but actually we had been "grooming" Kayla as her parents since her birth for this next phase of life that she entered on Sept 4, 2009. Our desire has been for her life to express and represent Jesus by loving, honoring and obeying Him. One of my deep desires for both of my children is that when they go to the altar to give themselves to their spouse, that they be pure. I have specifically prayed for that from the beginning of their lives.

There were times when we had to intensely battle in prayer for Kayla's purity. The enemy had designs to ensnare her. But we were watchful. We were prayerful, and the Lord alerted us to things as they needed to be addressed. I marvel at hindsight. Seeing the times that God brought things to our attention, going to prayer, and then seeing Him bring about good. He kept her safe, He kept her pure.

So...look at the spiritual picture, and the message in it from God for His Bride...

"But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut. Matthew 25:10

Scripture tells us Jesus is the Bridegroom, and His Church is His Bride. His Bride should spend her time getting ready for when he comes for us.

Before I tell you what we did right (by God's grace) to prepare her, I will tell you that we made many mistakes. But the Lord is merciful and gave us grace and second chances in our messes as we kept turning to Him. He honored and blessed our desire for His will to be carried out, and His vision for Kayla's life that He planted in our hearts. Remember too, that He promises to hear the prayers of His people that are according to His will.

Getting ready for the wedding day wasn't only about landscaping, decorations, dress-shopping, and picking out music...it was attending to the Word of God, teaching Kayla, taking her to the places where she would be given the light of the knowledge of truth. Keeping her from traps and snares of the enemy who wanted to steal, kill and destroy her, her purity, and her faith. We were continually watchful for things in her life that would take her away from Jesus. That would impose on her purity...All of that was bathed in prayer and implimented by time spent with Jesus; listening to His words and obeying Him. Realizing that we would be held accountable for how we invested our time and energy with what He had entrusted to us.

There were times when I unintentionally offended people with my choices and beliefs. I turned off movies five minutes in, when they had friends over, if they had contents that were offensive to God. I kept them out of field trips, movies, and certain classes that would be offensive to God. I wrote letters to teachers about things I felt strongly about... It was uncomfortable for us often times, but knowing it was out of obedience to what God had planted in my heart gave us the motivation to obey and endure any consequences of our obedience.

We made a priority of establishing boundaries between the world and our home. We were careful with our choices regarding what they took into their eyes and ears, what they wore, who they hung out with, what they read and looked at, what they said, where they went, etc.

As I look at some of the things we have done with our kids, I see the same needs for our lives, those of us who await our Bridegroom... as we prepare for The Eternal Wedding Banquet...

  • Attend to the Word of God.
  • Watch and Pray.
  • Establish boundaries between what is worldly and your heart.
  • Keep your God-given "gates", your eyes and your ears, pure.
  • Go where you can grow.
  • Don't go where you wont grow.
  • Be willing to be thought crazy. (Dare to be different)
  • Keep your eyes on eternal things.
  • Trust
  • Obey
...and leave the rest to Him who is faithful, will establish you, and is able to keep you and your children blameless until the day of Christ Jesus! Glory to God!

Pause my music on the sidebar, and take a listen to this lovely song by Leeland:

4 comments:

Karen said...

Hi, my name is Karen from
http://glassofsweettea.blogspot.com/
I came by your blog and wanted to introduce myself, I am fairly new to blogging and have enjoyed getting and learn from some other sisters in Christ.
I hope when you get a chance you will stop by to visit me as well.
I had a good time browsing through you blog and I will be back to visit again.
Have a blessed day..

Karen said...

Hi Kathy.. so glad you got a chance to stop by to visit..and I too look forward to getting to know you better and becoming blogging buddies..
Have a blessed weekend..

Tammi said...

Oh my..this came at the most needed time in my life. Having to put the kids into public school, after being in Christian school for years, then home schooled the past two years since we no longer could afford Christian school. I sigh because I'm scared....but I see from your experience, lessons that I am going to need to grasp hold of, tightly, to keep them grounded, and of course keep me on my knees. Motherhood keeps me on my knees, but this is a new facet that I'm not sure I'm "ready" for. But with God, all things are possible. Thank YOU so much for sharing this with us. Thank you too for being such a blessing to me too. :)

Rachel B said...

Wow, it's been a year already!

What a wonderful post, Kathy! Thank you for the reminder to guard those established boundaries around my own heart...and those of my children. Daring to be different can be a challenge at times, but it is so needed.

I bet you will be thrilled to see this "grooming" passed on to the next generation...as you welcome your new grandchild. :)

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