Larry Sheehy-022711Listen to Larry Sheehy read his Thinking of God column.
I agree with the person who said, "If I'd known grandkids were going to be this much fun, I'd have had them first!" But that's not the way it works, is it?! The children come first, and then the grandchildren. And rearing our children right helps insure that our grandchildren will turn out well.
Although Carole and I weren't in the habit of giving too much unsolicited advice to our children about how to parent theirs, I'd like to pass on the following so called "Ten Slightly Helpful Laws of Parenting" from Carrie Russell.
They were obviously intended to be humorous, but there is a degree of truth and "wisdom" in them. They are consistent with the adage that "To be forewarned is to be forearmed," as well as "Laughter is the best medicine." According to Ms Russell, parenting will be easier if you keep these in mind.
1. The later you stay up, the earlier your child will wake up the next morning.
2. For a child to become clean, something else must become dirty.
3. Toys multiply to fill any space available.
4. The longer it takes you to make a meal, the less your child will like it.
5. Yours is always the only child who doesn't behave.
6. If the shoe fits...it's expensive.
7. The surest way to get something done is to tell a child not to do it.
8. The gooier the food, the more likely it is to end up on the carpet.
9. Backing the car out of the driveway causes your child to have to go to the bathroom.
10. The more challenging the child, the more rewarding it is to be a parent...sometimes.
As these suggest, rearing children can be a challenge. It is also a great responsibility, and can be one of life's supreme joys as well. God certainly intended that it be a joyous blessing to those who take it seriously. One of the Israelite Psalmists wrote, "Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one's youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them." (Psalm 127:4-5)
Of course, "parenting," by definition, is really primarily up to the parents. Sure, it's filled with testing situations, a lot of which you'll feel you fail miserably! But, through trial and error, and trusting in the Lord's wisdom and help, you can succeed in bringing your children up "in the training and instruction of the Lord." (Ephesians 6:4)