Parenting, as wonderful as it is, can be exhausting. It can also be discouraging. We put so much time, effort, and energy into not only taking care of our kids, but also teaching and training them. Are there times when you ever wonder if parenting is worth it?!
One of my most popular workshops at conferences is Training Character Into Your Children. I often tell parents that before coming to the conference it seemed that my kids were at their worst. I was known to ask my husband:
“How can I go and speak on training character into children, when OUR kids have none?!”
I often called a dear friend when I was discouraged, and I remember saying to her (on more than one occasion!):
It seems that the more consistent I am in having a Bible time with the kids, memorizing Scripture, and working on character training, the worse the kids get. I’m not sure that it’s doing any good, or that it’s worth the time and effort!
Have you ever felt that way? Maybe you haven’t voiced it as I did, but you have thought it!
Consider these 3 things when you are wondering if your parenting is worth it:
1. Recognize where those thoughts are coming from.
The devil wants us to believe that lie. He knows the power of God’s Word, and is going to make every effort he can to discourage us and keep us from spending time teaching our kids God’s Word.
When those thoughts come, speak truth to yourself. Remind yourself that God’s Word will NOT return unto Him void. You may not see immediate results or changes in your kids, but His Word WILL accomplish what it is supposed to. Our job is to be faithful to teach it diligently to our kids, and trust God with the results. Don’t be weary in well doing, for in due season you WILL reap. (Galatians 6:9)
2. Remember that what you are doing as a parent is of eternal value.
We can’t take any of our “stuff” to heaven, but we can take our kids! Anything we do to point our kids to God, and prepare them for His service is of eternal value.
Our work as parents, is work that we do as unto the Lord. Whether it’s cleaning, cooking, doing laundry, teaching our kids God’s Word, training our kids, or spending time with our kids, it is serving the Lord. It is our ministry, and it matters for eternity. THAT makes it worth it!
3. Realize that you may NEVER know the full impact your teaching and training has had on your kids.
Your job is to be faithful and diligent in your training, while trusting God for the results.
Awhile back I got an email from my son Mike, who is a missionary in the Philippines. I love how he worded this!
Mom, I just wanted to let you know that I’ve been thinking about you today. I don’t think either of us will ever know the difference you made in my life over all the years of teaching and training. I hope that you believe it was worth it.
Little did I know when Mike was a little 5 year old boy how God would use the hours I spent helping him (and his siblings) memorize God’s Word. As a missionary, he realized that the best way to keep his converts coming to church and growing in the Lord, was to get them memorizing Scripture!
He put together Bible memory packs for his new converts, and said those who memorized Scripture were the ones who kept coming to church, and then bringing others to hear the Gospel.
All of this started with a mom who sometimes wondered if it was worth it to spend all that time on Bible memory!
When I encouraged a love for God’s Word in Mike as a young boy by reading it to him, telling him Bible stories, encouraging him to read the Bible daily, and then celebrating the first time he read the Bible all the way through, I didn’t know how far that love for God’s Word would go.
I didn’t know then that my little boy would one day use his love of the Bible to preach, teach, and disciple others in a foreign country.
Yes, it was worth all the time I invested in teaching & training him to love God’s Word!
The next time you get tired or discouraged in your parenting and start wondering if it’s worth it, remember that what you are doing is unto the Lord, and that makes it worth it! Be encouraged, and keep on.
If you’d like to get your children started with reading their Bibles, and need a plan for them to follow, sign up for free BIBLE READING PLANS YOUR KIDS WILL ENJOY.