It was a typical Sunday afternoon. We had ventured to a restaurant in our Sunday best and were enjoying a seemingly innocent conversation as we awaited our order. One of my little guys declared, “Mommy, I’m going to marry you when I have enough money.”
Naturally I giggled, but his older sister couldn’t let that go. “You can’t marry your mom, silly.” The two of them bantered back and forth about who you were allowed to marry and who you couldn’t. And then came the comment I never expected.
“Well, maybe I’ll just marry Aubrey” said another daughter in a matter-of-fact way.
I think my eyes fell out of my head. Or maybe my jaw hit the table. Either way, everyone looked at me awaiting some sort of explanation. Aubrey was her best friend. And it wasn’t that I thought she had feelings of attraction toward her friend. After all, she was only 10. She didn’t have romantic feelings for anyone. But to hear those words come out so casually exposed a HUGE parenting error on my part.
Somehow I managed to not jump to any conclusions or overreact (picture crazy over-protective mom spraying a huge aerosol can of anti-bacterial hand soap). Instead I simply asked her why she would say that. Her response was a beautiful set-up for what I had neglected to say all of this time. “Well, she is nice and boys are awful and can’t be trusted.”
I have to admit that she had a fair assessment there of the facts. And given her age, the fact that she thought boys were awful was to be expected. However, I couldn’t miss the opportunity to make up for what I had neglected to teach. “Baby, you can’t marry Aubrey. God’s Word forbids you to marry someone of the same gender,” I began. “And He also has a very specific design for marriage: that’s one man and one woman forever.”
Her response? “Oh, I didn’t know that. I change my mind.”
We busted out laughing and I continued by sharing with her that there are people in our culture today who are seeking to attack God’s design for marriage. Yes, I specifically shared the recent court ruling making same-sex marriage acceptable in all 50 states. I shared about the bakery couple who took a stand and were being attacked for it, causing them to lose their business. I talked about what we could do about it and how we could love people who misunderstand God’s commands.
I went to bed that night feeling good about the conversation, but not so good about my lack of proactive parenting.
God has given us one command as parents and it’s to teach His laws to our children, to “talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise” (Deut. 6:6-7). Maybe I had sort of done that. Or maybe I could have chalked up my failure to the fact that my children had never met a person who was married to (or even dating) someone of the same sex. My kids were so young. Did they really need to know about this very sensitive subject?
Oh, but read on. Deuteronomy 6:8-9 says that we are to “bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Yeah, I had definitely failed at doing this and it wasn’t just in this one area. There were others. Had I really taught them exactly what God’s Word says about abortion? Alcohol and drug use? Music, movies, and other media?
Do your kids really know what you believe?
The truth was- my kids didn’t fully know what I believed. Worse, they didn’t truly know what the Bible has to say about some of these crucial subjects. I had taught them about certain things, but others had been vastly neglected because they were less present… or so it seemed.
Are you guilty, too? I fear that in our culture so many things have become permissible and the word “tolerance” is becoming something that Christians believe to be a biblical concept. I don’t know about you, but recent events (specifically with Planned Parenthood) have made me ever so sensitive to the fact that our culture has a very specific agenda and is INDEED teaching our children, whether we like it or not.
The question is, are we giving our kids the tools they need to defend their faith or are we letting them eat right out of the hands of the wolves?
Yes, I believe it’s one or the other without an in between (more about that tomorrow). And that’s why I have been working diligently to create a new Bible study that lays the basic foundations for our faith and will help me walk my kids step-by-step through many of the most important issues we face today. In the study, we dig into the Scriptures, learn from godly counsel, and then create a statement of faith about each and every one of today’s hot topics including the sanctity of marriage, sanctity of life, purity, substance use/abuse, media, and more.
Want to join us?