January 9, 2008
“Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6 (NAS)
Do you pray for your kids to “get caught” when they do wrong? I know that may sound strange to some, but let’s say that you have a student driver in your home that is inclined to speed. Wouldn’t you rather he or she be stopped by a police officer than be stopped by a tree? Praying for your child to “get caught” may be the difference between the two.
As parents, it’s our job to teach our children how to live wise, safe and healthy. Thankfully, God is on our side. I use Him to my advantage by praying daily for my children to “get caught” in their wrong behavior. They are aware of this and have learned that God always come through.
I’ll never forget the first time my son “got caught” speeding. He was a young driver who thought that he was “King of the Road” until his reign came to a halt by a state trooper.
Entering through the backdoor, he didn’t say a word or even look at his dad and me. Placing the ticket on the kitchen counter, along with his keys, he ran upstairs to his room, closed the door, and began to sob. His dad and I looked at each other. Immediately, I got up, went to our son’s room, and knocked on his bedroom door. He didn’t answer.
Downstairs, his dad called to me, “You’re not going to believe this.” Still holding the ticket in his hand, my husband informed me that our son was speeding down the highway through a construction site at 92 miles per hour. Stunned and feeling rather sick to my stomach, I replied, “So that’s why he left his car keys beside the ticket. He knows we’ll never let him drive again.”
Although I was terrified at the thought of my son I racing down the freeway at top speed, I was thankful that he had been caught and was alive to sit in our family room and discuss, again, the good habits of safe driving. Of course, he had a few months to review those safety tips before he sat behind the wheel of a car again.
Getting stopped by a police officer for speeding instead of a tree is actually a gift of grace for both our teens and us. It provides us with the opportunity to further train, nurture, and guide our adolescent according to the rules of the road. Otherwise, they may continue to speed without our knowledge which could lead to tragic results. For that matter, any misconduct that happens without our knowledge can cause a child to end up in a place he or she never intended on being.
Praying for your kids to “get caught” is not about being a controlling, mean, rule-orientated parent. It’s about being a wise, caring parent. When your child “gets caught,” it’s not a tragedy nor is it a cause to tear down their spirit with condemning words of disapproval. “Getting caught” is actually a blessing in disguise. It’s an opportunity to “re-train your child in the way they should go” (Proverbs 22:6).
When we see it from this perspective, it defuses our anger and allows us to see the situation in a new light. I’ve come to realize that God is hearing my prayers and protecting my child by allowing me to see where he or she needs more guidance. Revealing these rough edges is God’s way of coming along side of us and helping us to parent our child. With God on your side, we’re sure to succeed.
Dear Lord, as much as I love my children, I know You love them more and desire only good things for them. I ask You to reveal any darkness or wrongdoing they may be involved in. Allow them to get caught so that, with Your help, we can redirect their path that leads to a life of righteousness, in Jesus’ Name Amen.
After inviting God to help you parent your child, be aware when your child gets caught that God has heard and answered your prayer. Thank Him! Then, share this with your child. It will help make God real to them. Make sure you explain it in a way that reveals both your and God’s love and concern for them.
How do you view your role as a disciplinarian; to teach or to control your child?
Do you feel alone in raising your children?
Have you ever thought that if God has called you to the task of parenting, He has also equipped you to succeed?
How can asking God to help your children “get caught” in wrong behavior make you a better parent?
Proverbs 1:8, “Hear, my son, your father’s instruction, and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.” (NAS)
Proverbs 19:18, “Discipline your son while there is hope, and do not desire his death.” (NAS)
Proverbs 29: 17, “Correct your son and he will give your comfort; He will also delight your soul.” (NAS)
James 1:5, “But if any one of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” (NAS)
Proverbs 31 Ministries
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Wednesday, 09 January 2008.