One of the hardest things about motherhood is that you can’t do the job properly and maintain a high approval rating from your charges. I’ve been growing weary of the eye rolling, door slamming, and tantrums when I redirect, correct, and discipline. Who wants to be the bad guy all the time?
After a particularly tough week, this verse came up in our Sunday sermon:
This word “revelation” is translated in other bible versions as “vision”, “message”, “guidance” or “word”. It is a term that indicates divine communication. The pastor was talking about the need for believers to be in fellowship and in the Word of God together in order to grow in their faith and walk the narrow path. However, God was speaking to me loud and clear about something else:
Where there is no guidance from the Word, no “vision” of a life following hard after God, your children will cast off restraint and run wild. Press on, momma, for they will be happy and blessed if they heed the wisdom and instruction that you share.
Suddenly, always being liked by my children seems unimportant. I see the cost of seeking their approval. I see the incredible need to pour godly advice and correction into their lives even when they don’t want to hear it. The verse says that they will be blessed if they heed wisdom’s instruction. How will they know wisdom if they do not hear it? How will they heed instruction if they don’t hear it? Am I willing to be the bad guy for their sake, to give them a chance to live a blessed life?
God is also reminding me that raising my children is so much more than rules and consequences. I need to take the time to give wise instruction. That’s the last thing I want to do when I’m exasperated over a discipline issue. However, when tough and tempting situations come along, “Mom said not to do this,” isn’t quite enough innner dialogue to keep my kids out of trouble. They need to understand God’s word and God’s ways. They need to understand the consequences of the action they are about to take. They need to believe that making good decisions will bring benefits and blessings.
I must remember that if I take time to share the Word of God with them, I can stand on these promises:
So shall My word be that goes forth out of My mouth: it shall not return to Me void [without producing any effect, useless], but it shall accomplish that which I please and purpose, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. Isaiah 55:11AMP
For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 AMP
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. John 14:26 NIV
So I am resolved to worry less about how much my kids like me in moments that require discipline. I am determined to take more time explaining why certain behaviors and actions are wrong. I am resolved to teach my kids how to guard their hearts and minds with the Word of God. I am determined to take a stand against what is harmful to my children, whether they recognize it or not.
I am resolved to be the best kind of bad guy that I can be.