Life should be like Chuck E. Cheese: A place where a kid can be a kid.
This was a quote from my eleven year old as we sat and had one of our many mother/son visits.
I have been blessed with two sons, the oldest of which is just now getting to the age where life is caught between childhood and adolescence. I try from time to time to sit down with both of my sons and connect on their level. I want to raise my children to understand that they are free to talk to me and ask me questions. I believe that if we start this now while they are still young, that we will be able to continue it throughout their lives.
There are things in this world that I wish my children never had to know about. There are evils in this world that I can protect my children from, but there are also things which I can only prepare them to handle.
As we sat down to visit, I told my boys, ” There are things in this world that I wish you never had to learn about. The world should be a place where…” as I paused in an attempt to find my wording, my oldest son looked at me and said, ” Where a kid can be a kid, like at Chuck E. Cheese?”
Imagine the look on my face as I came to the realization that at just eleven years old, my son understood exactly what I was trying to say.
We went on with our conversation and discussed why the world did not carry the same motto as Chuck E. Cheese, and why they had to be careful as they grew. We discussed some of the evils of this world that I had realized I would not be able to protect them from and the best way for them to handle these situations.
After my boys had gone on to play, I was doing my motherly duties around the house and that simple little phrase from such an innocent source kept coming back to my mind.
The world should be a place where ” A kid can be a kid,” but the sad truth is that we are raising our children in a world where that has been made almost impossible. These days, our children are faced with so much more than even I was at their age.
Parents, I want to encourage you today. Aunts, Uncles, and Grandparents, this is for you as well.
Our children need us. They need us to teach them about the world, not by the world’s standards, but by God’s standards.
Too many times the children of today are left raising each other. They are raised by the radio, the television, the video games. Please understand, I am not saying any of these things are wrong, but they can not take the place of Godly parents and the influence that God intended for us to have on our children.
We have been called by God to make our homes a place where ” A kid can be a kid.” Our homes should be a place where they can come in, shut the door, and lock the world outside.
It breaks my heart when I think about the children that are being left to raise themselves.
Our daughters are being taught that you have to dress a certain way, or be a certain size or have particular shape if you want to be popular and accepted in this world. They are not being taught to respect their own bodies and to demand that same respect from those around them.
Our sons are being taught that you are only cool if you dress this way, or look that way. They are being taught that respecting women is a thing of the past.
Children are being faced with things such as sex, drugs, and pornography long before their brains can even comprehend it.
Sadly, our children are being asked to grow up in a grown-up world where things exist and go on every day that they should not even have to know about for many years to come.
Parents, I urge you today, please understand that your children are a gift from God. (Psalm 127:3) God has lent them to us to raise and teach. He has given us the responsibility of teaching them the right things. It is our job to make sure they are correctly informed about all the things that the world is going to try to throw at them. Our children are being attacked daily and it is your job and my job to stand in the gate for these precious little ones until they are old enough to defend themselves.
I firmly believe that one day I will stand before God, and I will be held accountable for the way I raised my children. I will not be able to point a finger at the television, or the radio. I will not be able to blame the school system or their social group. I will answer for the things I teach, or fail to teach my children. I pray every day that God will give me the wisdom I need to raise His children.
Parents, I know raising children is a daunting task, but it is also an immense blessing.
I want to encourage you today, if in reading this you realize that you have not been plugged in as you should, you can change that. Start today. Start with prayer, because that is the only hope you have of completing the task at hand. Get involved, plug back in; it is not too late.
For the parents who read this and say, ” I am doing my best,” I say to you, ” Way to go!” I know that you get tired, and I know that you may want to quit sometimes. Please do not. Your children need you, they depend on you. God has promised us, in His word, that if we would train our children in the ways they should go, when they are old they will not depart from them. (Proverbs 22:6) Keep up the good work. You are doing a great job.
Our children are the future. I know sometimes that future looks bleak, but with God’s help anything is possible. You may be raising the next President of the United States, or the next Billy Graham. We have no idea what God has planned for our children, but of this one thing we are certain… we have been given a job to do.
Let us come together and make this world a place where, ” a kid can be a kid.”