There are many scriptures to which I cling like one would cling to a scrap of wood while floating in the sea filled with hungry sharks smelling blood in the water. These have been my guide posts, the light at the end of the tunnel of motherhood, and the happy promises of what this life can be today. I do believe Proverbs to be the best book for common sense, practical advice. It has been from Proverbs that I have taken most of the scriptures that I have trained my children with and used to teach them how to function in this world. But for encouragement, nothing beats the book of Isaiah.
Now, if you are familiar with the Bible or have been around the religious establishments, you may find this odd. After all, this whole book of prophecy is about the Israelites blowing it once again and having judgement come down from heaven. But, that is what makes it so encouraging. God has passed judgement on them and then He makes them these beautiful promises. We all blow it every day, we fail to live up to the standard but take heart, God makes us so many great and mighty promises in spite of ourselves. These promises were given to a people in the old testament before our Savior, Jesus Christ, had come to make right all the wrongs, but never the less, once we accept Jesus as our Savior all the promises become ours new and old testament. All we have to do is believe Him. For me, the chapter I have poured over has been chapter 54. It is so great.
As I have walked through the years of parenting, one verse in particular has stood out as a huge ray of hope to me. Isaiah 54:13 “All your children shall be taught by the Lord, and great shall be the peace of your children.” Isn’t that great! Who doesn’t want their children to be at peace? This doesn’t mean without challenges, the Word is clear that we will have challenges on this earth, but through it all, great shall be the peace of my children.
The first translation I read this in said “Your children shall be taught of the Lord“. I took this to mean that I taught my children of the Lord and they would have peace. A perfectly good and true thing to do. But then I read it with the word “by the Lord” and I realized that I was not in this mothering thing alone, God was right there with me teaching my children about Himself, hallelujah! Thank you Jesus. How many of us know, left to our own devices we are not the mothers or fathers that we want to be and this whole parenting thing can, at times, be overwhelming? I was so encouraged to know that the perfect Father was by my side- actively involved.
This revelation came to me back when my children were just preschoolers- the older two, the younger two were still just a glimmer in their father’s eye. Now, those two are 19 and 17. They are amazing, they have never rebelled, our house filled with teenagers (we have 3 in residence at this time) is not filled with anger or fighting, it is a home of peace because great is the peace of my children. Does this mean that there is never any friction? No, there will be growing pains and friction as children become adults and are ready to move out on to their own. This is normal. What is not supposed to be normal is rebellion, anger, antagonistic behavior by both parents and teens. God did not entrust me with these precious gifts for me to accept societies ways as “normal”. We are a living testament that you can have a great time and a great peace with teenagers or preschoolers- the peace just looks different.
Some of you may wonder about the “how” to receive the promise of God. This is how I would pray this scripture (and still do) over my children as they were growing up:
“Father, I thank you that your Word is true and you promise that “My children, Cheyenne, Savannah, Sierra & Jonathan, will be taught by You and GREAT will be their peace. Thank you, Jesus, for the blood you shed on the cross to make this my promise. Thank you!”
Then when all hell wants to break loose in your home- You remember this prayer and repeat it. You cling to the promise regardless of what you see in front of your face. Our children’s flesh does not always- hardly ever- want to cooperate with the Word of God or you, but hold tight and you will reap a harvest of PEACE!