Monday, June 19th
Devotional written by Melanie Pulis, Small Groups Area Leader
BALANCING PARENTAL SCALES
When I was a little girl, my dad required a lot of work from my sister and me. We had inside chores, and we had outside chores, including mowing the lawn. I vividly remember mowing the lawn at such a young age that I had to extend my arms to reach the handlebar to propel the mower forward. I judged my dad harshly and thought he was certainly exasperating me. At the time, I saw the assignment as cruel and unusual punishment, but in reflection, this and other challenging tasks instilled a work ethic that has served me well throughout my life.
With parenting, there is a delicate balance of grace and truth, and we need the Holy Spirit to help us steady the scales. Fortunately, the Bible contains many examples of imperfect fathers and mothers God blessed and used in mighty ways. The Apostle Paul’s wisdom in Ephesians 6:1-4 helps us balance the scales. His instruction was not exclusively to fathers, as he used the same word from Hebrews 11:23, referring to Moses’ “parents,” and his point was that children should honor their father and mother. Parental authority should be without harsh and unreasonable demands, which may drive children to the point of exasperation.
There are days as a mother when I feel that I fail, but in those times, I am reminded how much I need Jesus, and of the truth in Lamentations 3:22-33, “because of the Lord’s great love, we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.”
Prayer: Dear Lord, give us wisdom and grace to parent with the perfect balance of grace and truth, and “to bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” In Jesus’ name, Amen.