In Church the other day my Pastor said something that struck a chord in my heart.
He was sharing the story of Adam and Eve, explaining how God commanded them not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. God did not say “DON’T” because He wanted to control Adam and Eve, He said “DON’T” because He loved them and desired to protect them. The Pastor continued by adding that after Adam and Eve sinned against God by eating the fruit of that particular tree, He pushed them out of the Garden of Eden.
“And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” So the Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken. After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life.” – Genesis 3:22-24
God did not drive Adam and his wife out of the Garden of Eden because He was annoyed or lashed out at Adam and Eve in anger, He banished them from the Garden out of love, to protect them from living in their sin forever.
As I heard this, my hand rested gently on the top of my belly, realizing that I need to parent like God does, with love. Although my child is not born yet, I know that my husband and I have a huge responsibility before us to parent as God has called us to. I quickly wrote a note in my phone to remind me of what I had learned. Then I leaned over to show my husband and share with him my desire to parent like God.
What does parenting like God look like?
To be honest, I am still in the process of learning this myself. Yet I know that with this one example I only want to say “DON’T” to my child with the intent of love and protection. All too often selfishness can weave its way into parenting and I want to be cautious not to do this. I am praying that I have the self-control to not say “DON’T” just because I want to control a situation, because my child might be annoying me, or even out of anger.
I hope that I am astute as a parent to enable my child’s learning, engage in his development, discipline when needed, and love at all times… just like God does with His children.
Do you desire to parent like God?
What are some other characteristics of God as a Father that are a great example for us as parents?
What are ways we can redirect children without yelling “DON’T”?
- Jennifer Smith www.unveiledwife.com
photo credit: @unveiledwife