The first few months with a newborn can be tough. Your whole life gets adjusted to meet this little one’s needs. Sleep becomes a thing of the past as you work to care for them. These days can remind you of your own inadequacy and desperate need for the Lord’s care. We are excited to have Eden here with us. She has such a sweet temperament. At this point we rarely hear her cry which has been a pleasantly different experience from the boys. There is one thing that Eden seems to be confused about. She is having a hard time getting this whole sleep at night and stay awake during the day concept. Lindsey and I have been working hard to keep her awake during the day. We’ve tried many things to get her up and it’s become comical how deep of a sleeper she is…during the day that is. When night falls she rises and opens her eyes wide ready to take in all that is around her. We’ve made some steps in the right direction but really at the end of the day we know that unless the Lord intervenes we are helpless. With each child Lindsey and I have held fast to Psalm 127. This is a small chapter but it carries all of the truth we need in raising up our children, especially during the newborn stage of life. Solomon says this, “Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman keeps awake in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to retire late, to eat the bread of painful labors; For He gives to His beloved even in his sleep. Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; They will not be ashamed when they speak with their enemies in the gate.” When I am feeling helpless I look to this passage and remind myself of three main truths:
Parenting Calls for Dependency- If we expect that our hard work alone will get us anywhere than we are only fooling ourselves. Solomon begins this chapter by showing us how vain our attempts are apart from the work of God within the home. We can guard our kids. We can keep close watch over them. We can stay up late and rise early. We can do all we can to feed and provide for them but “unless the Lord builds the house” then all of this labor is meaningless. As parents we are dependent on the Lord to “build up” our children. He has given a work for us to do as parents but we must rely on Him each step of the way. As hard as I work in other areas I need to work even harder at raising my kids up in prayer to the only One whose work matters.
The Lord Will Provide- At the end of verse 2 Solomon proclaims, “For He gives to His beloved even in his sleep.” It is up to the Lord to provide and here we see that His giving really isn’t dependent on us at all. The Lord provides based on His gracious love and care for us. This doesn’t mean that we don’t work hard but at the end of the day we go to sleep trusting that we will receive what we need not based on our own efforts but based on His provision for His beloved. One of the best things that we could do in the midst of failed attempts, late night struggles, and exhaustion is just stop, rest, and trust Him at His word.
Children Are a Gift- Finally it is always good to remind ourselves that children are not a chore, they are not an annoyance, they are not a punishment but they are a precious gift from God. This means that they should be treated, cared for, and cherished as such. When we want to get frustrated or give up we must remember that God says this little one is a gift, reward, and blessing given for our good. Parenting comes down to trusting God on these things. If you are struggling today, feeling helpless or needy remind yourself of these precious truths and look to Him to guide you in the days ahead.
Trusting God With You, Pastor Rudy