Get ’Em Through It
If you find [wisdom], there is a future hope for you.
A waitress once recognized me (JCD) when I came into the restaurant where she worked. She was a single mother and wanted to talk about her twelve-year-old daughter, who had been a struggle to raise. “We have fought tooth and nail for this entire year,” she said. “We argue nearly every night, and most of our fights are over the same issue. She wants to shave her legs, but I feel she’s too young.” My response? “Lady, buy your daughter a razor!”
That twelve-year-old was paddling into a time of life that would rock her canoe. As a single parent, this mother would soon be trying to keep her rebellious adolescent away from drugs, alcohol, sex and pregnancy, early marriage, school failure, and the possibility of running away. In that setting, it seemed unwise to make a big deal over such a small issue as shaving. While I agreed with the mother that adolescence should not be brought on prematurely, there were higher priorities to consider.
Scripture says that “By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established” (Proverbs 24:3). Those same qualities should be applied to raising families. It takes both wisdom and understanding to know when to tighten your grip and when to loosen it. In the case of hardheaded kids floating toward the rapids in the teenage years, the wisest approach may be to simply get ’em through it.
Before you say good night…
Father, may we keep our focus on those things that are most important to the well-being of our children. May our discernment be equal to the task. Most of all, help both of us to keep our eyes upon You. Amen.
This devotional is taken from Night Light for Parents. Copyright © 2000 by James Dobson, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission.