|A snow family and their dog|
A New Kind of Parent
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:
The old has gone, the new is here!
2 Corinthians 5:17Even though my children are grown, I’m still being renewed as a parent daily. I’m always learning and maturing in my relationship with the Lord, and much of what I learn applies to my parenting role. It’s something you never feel you completely master. Everyone makes mistakes along the way that we can’t go back and do over, but we can start from where we are and keep improving.
No matter how old they get, I’ll always be Mom. That connection never changes. I still look to my mom and dad for comfort, advice, prayer support, and reassurance. And even though it surprised me, they thought of their parents the same way until they passed away.
When my last grandparent died, my mom and aunt talked about the fact that they were orphans. I was jolted by the thought. No matter how old we are, we never lose that all-important connection. That’s why I want to do the very best job I can with my kids, step-kids, and others I unofficially “adopt” along the way.
No matter where you are in the parenting arena - pre-parent, young parent, empty nester, grandparent, or a loving aunt or uncle – you can be new each day. The Bible has much to say about parenting, giving examples of how to do it right as well as stories of those who made a mess of things. Because of Easter, we not only have the information to put this wisdom into action, we also have the power of Christ in us to succeed.
A few areas I’m challenged to be new and improved:
· Not Showing Favoritism –Isaac and Rebekah are a prime example. They played favorites; it tore apart their family and created two nations who are still at war today (Genesis 25:19-34).
· Discipline – King David and Eli both loved God, but enabled their sons’ by failing to discipline them. David almost lost his kingdom to his scheming son, Absalom. Eli lost the priesthood and his life because he let Hophni and Phinehas do what they wanted . All three sons died tragic deaths as a result (2 Sam. 13-18 and 1 Sam. 2).
· Encouragement – As children we’re commanded to honor our parents; as parents, we’re told not to discourage our children (Eph. 6:4 and Col. 3:21). This could mean being harsh, inconsistent, living a life that’s unworthy of honor, or crushing their spirit.
· Spiritual Training – Deuteronomy 6:5-9 says to talk about our love for God in everyday life. It’s not just for Sunday school; we teach our kids with every breath we breathe.
· Blessing – The Bible is full of examples of blessing. First God showed us how by blessing us, backing it up with constant proof of His love. Then He instructed us to pass it on. Apostle Paul included a blessing to fellow believers in every letter he wrote – with praise for what they were doing right and envisioning hope for future success.Of course the only perfect parent is God. It’s so wonderful that no matter how many times we blow it, His forgiveness is just a prayer away. He will keep giving us new wisdom and energy to do this important job. Praise God for the very special gift of being a parent!
A Sweet Easter Surprise: Empty tomb rolls are easy to make and delicious. A yummy treat to make with your kids (or spouse) and talk about how sweet it is that the tomb of Christ is empty!
You will need:
1 batch homemade bread dough or frozen dough
Regular sized marshmallows
· Preheat oven to 350°
· Cut dough into 12-16 pieces (depending on how big you want your rolls)
· Roll dough into balls and flatten with rolling pin
· Place one marshmallow in the middle and seal dough around it
· Optional – roll in cinnamon sugar mixture: 1 T. sugar, 1 t. cinnamon
· Place rolls sealed side down in muffin cups or on a greased cookie sheet
· Cover and let rise 30 minutes or until dough bounces back when gently pressed
· Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly browned
· Cool on wire rackThe marshmallow will melt into the bread as it bakes and leave a hollow center. This is what we celebrate at Easter – that life is sweet because Jesus rose from the dead and lives in us.