Tuesday, April 14, 2009

So What about Proverbs 22:6?

Are you a parent who has a child that is on a wayward track? Did you seek to fulfill Proverbs 22:6, "Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it."? And now you wonder what happened to that beloved toddler who sang, "Jesus Loves Me.” This blog is dedicated to parents who have a "prodigal" child. For parents who despair over life choices of their child.

Together let's explore this verse a little deeper and learn how we can pray for our wayward children. The following is an excerpt from my Bible study, Perplexing Proverbs.

"Proverbs 22:6 is one of most frequently quoted of the Proverbs. At first glance, it seems to say that if we train our children correctly, they will surely be obedient, godly adults. Do I hear parental groans from those of us who have rebellious children? Before you begin to feel guilty, we need to take a closer look at how the total concept of this verse should be understood. We are going to look at two slightly different commentaries on this verse.

The first comes from Hard Sayings of the Bible. Concerning Proverbs 22:6, it states,
'The statement is called a proverb, not a promise. Many godly parents have raised their children in ways that were genuinely considerate of the children’s own individuality and the high calling of God, yet the children have become rebellious and wicked.'

There is, however, the general principle which sets the standard for the majority. This principle urges parents to give special and detailed care with the awesome task of rearing children so that the children may continue in that path long after the lessons have ceased

The Hebrew-Greek Key Study Bible offers another interpretation. The explanatory notes for Proverbs 22:6 make the following observations,
'The quality of training which the child receives is of critical concern. Parents should not assume that simply bringing their children up in a moral atmosphere is all that is needed. The primary goal in training up a child is that he is educated in the knowledge of God, but he should also be provided with a thorough preparation for life in general. When a child does choose to rebel and lead a corrupt life, it is often the parents who have failed in teaching or setting an example. It must be recognized, however, that there will be instances when the parents have done their best to correctly train a child, yet he will choose to reject the instruction he has received and go his own way.'[ii]

Do you see that we are responsible for our children, yet they are also responsible for their own decisions in life?

So what can we do? We can pray for our children. From my own personal experience I found praying Scripture is not only effective, it is uplifting to the parent who may be struggling. That’s why tomorrow we pray.

[i] Kaiser, Walter, C. Jr.; Peter H. Davids; F.F. Bruce; Manfred T. Brauch. Hard Sayings of the Bible, (Illinois: Inter-Varsity Press, 1996) P.288
[ii] Zodhiates, Spiros, Th.D. Exe. Ed., Hebrew-Greek Study Bible. (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 1996), p. 761.


Zoe said...

Thanks for the reminder Susanne. We are praying our way through this road.

Lysa TerKeurst said...

Beautiful teaching Susanne- I loved your devo this morning. I just made it part of my quiet time and will be looking for my answered prayers within my prayers. I love that idea!!!

Hugs to you sweet friend!

Anonymous said...

Susanne, I read the Proverbs 31 Woman devotions every morning. I am remarried of 3 yrs to a wonderful man who loves the Lord. He has two children and we just adore them. We only get 4 days/month to be with them and we ALL have a great relationship; however it is strained with his ex wife. She continuallys undermines us, etc... I don't want to get into all of that, but as a stepmother, your devotion spoke volumes to me. There are not many people that can understand my emotions, concerns, etc... when it comes to being the "stepmom". I want to do the right things. I wish these two children were my biological children and we could raise them up as in the ways of Christ. Do you have any blogs/books/resources I can go to that is "REAL" talk about being a stepmom. I so desparately need someone to talk to or refer to in this troubling time. My stepdaughter is 12 and is struggling big time with school, wanting to be with us, but she and her brother are being made to feel responsible for their mother and their little brother by their mother. (She is 37, dating 3 different men, and my stepdaughter has said many times "I'm tired of being the parent"). We've already spent alot of money in court to try to get things changed, but with the legal system as it is, changes after the initial divorce decree is near to impossible. The attorneys don't really care and we THOUGHT we had a good attorney. Sorry for rambling. You just totally spoke to me and hope you can help - or at a minimum add me to your prayer list. Thank you soo much! Love in Christ, Georgette

Suzanne Eller said...

Loved the devo. How many teens would be changed if they found Christ through the love of a caring adult? Great example.

Lynn Cowell said...

Thank you SO much for your devo this morning. It reminded me again to trust in the Lord to do in my teens what only He can, but I can partner with Him!

Karen said...

Thank you Susanne for your devotion today. I have a persistant prayer that my (now adult) children would form an intimate and personal relationship with God. I too have been praying this for a long time (6 years now) and I see God at work. Sometimes it is very subtle; sometimes it is clear as sky-writing.

Thank you for your words of encouragement today to keep on praying and looking for the answer to my prayers in unusual places.

Ginger Hudock said...

thank you for this as well as your devotional today. I have a "Prodigal son" (age 20) and constantly pray for this situation. I have previously heard you live at "She Speaks" and encourage all to attend this great event.

Anonymous said...

this is for annonamous..
i know to well the dynamics of being married with step kids and being a step mom.
if you'd like to connect....
my e mail is rainie_30@msn.com
i, too, feel that if the "other parents would allow the kids to bond with their step family...it would be in the best intersts of the child and add the the parents lives...the "other" parents of both mine and my husbs kids destroyed our children by their selfishness...
and not one of them are serving the lord in a life/heart changing way to this day...
i really care and hear your heart...
i would never wish step parenting on anyone...