One way parents can help grow their children into mature adults is by being like a bucket, taking the time to try to draw out of them what is deep in their hearts and minds.
Be like iron. A second way of helping our children to grow in a Christ-like manner is by being like iron. Proverbs 27:17 says, “Iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” A dull knife can only be sharpened by something that can hone the edge of a blade. You cannot sharpen a knife with a cube of butter.
There are at least three requirements for a life committed to sharpening.
First of all, we need to know the dull areas of our children’s lives. Where exactly do our children need to be sharpened? Perhaps they lack discipline and need honing in that area of their lives. Maybe they need to become more attentive and develop a better sense of hearing what is important.
Secondly, we need to be in steady contact with our children. In order for a knife to be sharpened by a knife sharpener, it has to be in contact with the surface of the sharpener. Just being in close proximity won’t do. We may need to spend more quality time with our children so we can grow to understand them better. We may need to plan or attend more activities where we can observe our children as they live life.
Finally, we need to be sharpened for the sake of our children. A dull sharpening tool hardly benefits a knife that needs sharpening. If we grow in faith and works, it is much more likely that they will grow alongside of us. Are we in a Bible Study? Are we worshiping God regularly? Do we have a prayer life? Are we speaking kindly to and about others? Are we patient and calm or are we impatient and edgy?
Nothing dulls children quicker than living with parents who have lost their edge in the things that really matter in life.
So, let’s be like iron and sharpen the lives of our children in ways that will develop the living messages we send into a world that we will never see.
Something to think about…