Each one unique.
Each one especially designed.
Each one carved by the Master's hand.
Each one with strengths.
Each one with weaknesses.
And yet each one scarred by the ravages of the sin nature they inherited from us.
Our job is not to change the design of our children, but rather to train their hearts to be strong so that their sin nature will not destroy or distort the Master's design.
I remember eons ago, before I had children, coming down squarely on the Nurture side of the Nature Vs. Nurture argument. Now, 23 years later, I laugh at myself. How naive. It is not either/or but rather it is both/and. It is 100% Nature and 100% Nurture!
Our nurturing of our children matters immensely. I am a big proponent of pro-active parenting. What we do in our children's lives makes all the difference in the world.
But our children have a Designer...and therefore a design! And it is not our job to change that design.
I want to suggest that God's design of our children is under attack from the world, our own expectations, and their own sin nature. That is why parenting is such a grace-needed, prayer-producing activity! Because as parents we are not supposed to be engineers, tinkering with the design. Rather, we are gardeners: pulling weeds, fertilizing, pruning, and watering the gardens of our children's hearts.
Here is a wonderful article that got me thinking about this very thing.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.