I recently watched a woman try to describe her children. What was unique about her attempt was that she sought to do it in one word. I admit that I had never really thought about it before watching her effort. She tried to use a descriptive word for each of her children to encapsulate their personality and their dreams.
While watching her talk about her children a couple of thoughts came to my head. First, how would I describe each of my kids in one word? Then a second more pointed thought came to mind; “Would that word reflect my faith in God?”
There is a big difference between raising a “winner” and raising a “giver.” No one will mistake a “self-confident” person for a “self-sacrificing” one. There is a vast spiritual gap between “faithful” and “proud.”
There are a lot of good words that we can use to label our children, but not all of them reflect our faith. They can be smart or funny or an athlete or social or determined or fast or strong or even a leader with no knowledge of God.
Raising our children in the way of the Lord will lead to the fruit of the Spirit being manifest in their lives. They will be children who are known by their love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).
My question from this little exercise for myself was quite pointed, “Am I raising children who are defined by God’s standard or by the worlds?”
How would you label your child in one word? Maybe that says more about our parenting than their personality.