Many of us who are older remember our childhoods as carefree days, full of fun and learning and potential. Sadly, those days are gone for most young people today. Youngsters today face pressure from all sides, to conform, to copy, to get ahead—in short, to be what society considers “successful.” Yet all too many are missing a foundational support that was for millennia taken for granted.
Children are the future of society. But what is it like to be a young person today? Peer pressure—to wear the “popular” clothing (no matter how expensive), to listen to the “popular” music, to flaunt the “popular” electronic devices, and in general to go along with the “popular” crowd—is intense for many young people today.
In previous generations, younger children and maturing teens could usually count on support from the home, where an intact two-parent household would offer guidance, moral support and encouragement against the ills of peer pressure. Today. however, millions of youngsters spend most of their childhoods living in single-parent families, and sometimes in families where the parent is so busy “making ends meet” that there is scarcely any time left for parenting. And in some tragic cases, parents are so focused on their own lives that their children are seen as little more than a burden.
Not all parents are able to have children. And many parents who are blessed with children in this present age are confronted by seemingly insurmountable obstacles in rearing their children. But what does God’s word say about children? Consider: “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord” (Psalm 127:3). Far from being mere “rug rats,” God considers children an integral part of His plan for humanity. Notice the instructions God gave to the first man and woman: “Then God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it” (Genesis 1:28).
God tells fathers that they have a great responsibility in rearing their children “And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). The role of mother is also one that God highly values. Consider that the Apostle Paul told the young evangelist Timothy to show honor and respect to the older women in his congregations as if they were his mothers. Parenthood is a high calling, and God gives it great respect and honor.
Sadly, for all too many children today, their main influence is not mother and father, but instead is the “god of this age”—Satan the devil (2 Corinthians 4:4). And now, as if to mock those husbands and wives who cannot reproduce because of some tragic circumstance or another, Satan is now increasingly pushing society to accept new forms of “marriage” from which it is not even possible to beget children!
There is an even deeper reason why Satan hates the begettal of children. Not only did God want planet Earth to be full of generations of human beings; He desired this as part of His plan to reproduce Himself and extend His own Family. To learn more about this wonderful plan of God, read our exciting and inspiring booklet, Your Ultimate Destiny.
Yes, when husband and wife rear children today, they are carrying out in the physical realm something parallel to what God the Father is planning in the spiritual realm. Today’s true Christians—begotten at baptism through the Holy Spirit—will at Christ’s return be born into God’s Family and become full Spirit-children of their Father! What a wonderful future!
In the meantime, what does God say about rearing healthy, well-adjusted, happy children who will be prepared for that wonderful destiny God has in store for them? Read our informative and encouraging booklet, Successful Parenting: God’s Way and learn how you and your children can gain the blessings of God’s way of life!