Proverbs 4:1 Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding.
In August of 1987, on a beautiful Australian day, I walked into a room and was welcomed with a pleasant scent of crayon. I sat down and wrote these thoughts.
The Line Of Colour
I thought of colouring books and western scenes, there in a flash a long past dream.
A memory alive I remember the smell of crayon upon pictures coloured pastel.
Fast running horses and Indians a-flight, with purple and orange feathers and rust coloured guns.
Colouring my best to stay within the lines, till finally with heart the drawing was done.
Now I colour life with payments on house, tulip garden, and loving spouse.
Bringing up babies to stand as men, to choose colours that make mankind friends.
It hasn't changed much life and time, we still try to colour within the lines.
When I look back to the times when I was on the floor with my son colouring on one page of the colouring-book and my son colouring the other, it was a time of great joy and learning for us. With soft voices and muted tones, we talked about the everyday. Anything said was safe and simply responded to.
My son would talk to me in confidence. "Pecky-dog chewed one of my runners. I found a really big huntsmen spider in my room today, it was dead. The papayas don't taste too good right now, mom says to add orange juice, yuk I still don't like it. Mom says she has a new baby coming. Aah, I guess a brother would be OK. I like the mangos, yea! What do you think of this picture dad?" What a time of love and spiritual transformation that was for me. God was in our home and more than welcome there. Prov.15:1a A soft answer turns away wrath.
How fast that time past. One day I'm on the floor colouring with my small boys and the next they are driving away because they just got their driver's licence. What did I sow in their hearts during those years? Do they know their God? Do they pray, give and bless the Lord as I hope? When they pair off with a spouse to be, are they choosing a chaste path? Will they colour within the lines of God's word? Prov. 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. I notice that the proverb says, "When they are old they won't depart from it." It does not mean there will be no trouble in between.
How do we as parents, not meddle and get in the way of the Lord's workings in our children's hearts after they are accountable to their God? Hopefully, we have laid a non-hypocritical path for them to learn lessons from. Psalm 32:8 I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.
Do we, as parents, trust God that He will lead and take care of our children? Can we actually hand our children over to God, because they do belong to Him in the first place? He created them for His pleasure. We have to stop interfering with God's plan for their lives.
A man says to his wife."Honey, you have to stop meddling in our children's lives, they live on their own now."
The wife says, "I don't interfere or meddle in their lives!"
The man says, "Really. How old are our grandchildren?"
The wife says, " Well, the lawyer is seven, and the doctor is five."
We have to get out of the way and let God be their God. That does not mean we stop being influential parents. On the contrary, we will always love them and be there for them. At the same time, we will trust God to teach and lead them. Prov. 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.
Never stop praying for our children and never stop being a Godly example for them. We also pray for the children who are not in fellowship with their families and ask that they may, through God, be united to those who love them. Mal. 4:5-6a Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD: 6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers. I thought of colouring books and western scenes, there in a flash a long past dream. It might be time to do some colouring with our children and grandchildren. May it bring us the joy of the Lord.