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September 24 – Erecting trees and pillars

That our sons may be as plants grown up in their youth; That our daughters may be as pillars, Sculptured in palace style; – Psalm 144:12

Scripture reading: Psalm 144

Have you ever been inclined to say “let go and let God” about a situation in your life? It is sometimes very tempting to take that advice. Yet, even well-intended, that sentiment is bad advice. If you were racing down a steep hill on your bicycle and tried that, I fear it would not end well. I doubt many of us would agree to try that approach with parenting. Why not? Well, because we know ourselves. When you were a teenager, did you do something that later you hoped (and prayed!) would never be known by your parents? Prayer and parenting are not opposed, but are two sides of one coin. This is also that (well-known) secret of the Christian life, we pray and do. The request for deliverance in verse 11 was made with a mind to this “domestic tranquility” which only the Christian family may fully and richly enjoy.

The Christian family enjoys this domestic tranquility (not perfectly, though) by applying scriptural truth to all actions within the home and family. Behind all this parenting is prayer to the God Who gives sons as trees (Psalm 1) and daughters looking as majestic temple pillars, full of beauty and might. Yet, along with that praying, we work hard to see them raised as ones who desire to glorify God in all they do (Colossians 3:17). Covenant parenting is part and parcel of the warfare of this Psalm. May He strengthen us for the battle!

Suggestions for prayer

Ask God to show you the precious gift our children are, and the commitment to do all needed to raise them as covenant children in Christ.

This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional. Rev. Harold Miller is the pastor of the Covenant Reformed Church (URCNA) of Kansas City, Missouri.

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