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The process of making bread is similar to that of raising children. The basic recipe is relatively simple with few ingredients; but, in order to get bread, we must combine, mold, and shape all of the ingredients together. Then we must let the dough sit until it rises.
Once it rises, we separate the dough and, depending on our recipe, let it rise further before placing it in the oven. When it comes out of the oven, it’s beautiful and ready to be eaten. One of my favorite childhood memories is eating slices of freshly baked bread with butter on Saturday afternoons.
Proverbs 22:6 in the King James Version of the Bible reads, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 31:28 also says, “Her children arise up and call her blessed.”
Sometimes the hardest part is to just sit and wait while the bread—or in this case a child—is rising. As mothers, we train our children by teaching them, molding their characters, disciplining them, hugging them, and being practical examples for them. And then we must wait for all of this hard work to pay off. With bread, once all the ingredients are combined, we know an approximate amount of time until the bread will be ready to be placed into the oven. But with children we don’t know how long it will take for them to rise—for them to “arise up and call us blessed”.
I’ve had to sit and wait as my oldest went through a wayward stage. This child went off to school and probably had the typical college experience—enjoying his freedom away from home just a bit too much. When he came back home, I sometimes felt as if I didn’t know him. But, since he was an adult now, I learned it was better to pray and believe the promises of God’s word than to constantly nag or harass him.
So I prayed daily. I prayed constantly. I prayed often. My husband and I both prayed. Today, this young man is someone who lives to please the Lord: a young man who is not ashamed of what Christ has done and is doing in his life. But during that season, I had to wait and hope and pray and then wait longer as God worked and formed him into the perfect loaf of bread.
Through my experiences with my children, I know that the promises of God’s word are true. As I’ve waited with each child, I don’t wait idly. I wait with a belief that God’s promises aren’t empty, and they will come to fruition. I have followed His recipe, and now I need to wait. I wait as an exercise of faith. I wait hopefully.
So let’s do our part in raising our children and trust that when they are old, they will not depart from our training and will “arise up and call us blessed.”
QUESTION: What words of wisdom have encouraged you to be patient while waiting for your child to grow?
CHALLENGE: Next time you are tempted to rush the “rising” process with a child, take a moment to breathe a prayer and turn to the Lord for patience.
Edited by Briana Heinonen and Katie Carter.
Image from Pixabay; graphics by Anna Jenkins.