Words Of Wisdom

Train Up A Child

 

 

Proverbs 22:6

Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it

 

Colossians 3:20

Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.

 

 

 

 

Solomon's Words Of Wisdom

According to Titus 2, we as parents and grandparents have an awesome responsibility in training the younger men and women of today. The primary question we must ask ourselves is, “Are we guilty or innocent of causing them to fail?” Do we have any real Titus 2 men and women who will STAND UP for righteousness?! Where have all of the grandparents gone? Most of us have aged gracefully, and we blush when comments are made that we look as young as I children. This process of preservation is achieved through such practices as proper diet, exercise, Ms. Clairol, Mr. Magic, an occasional weave, wig or toupee, manicure, pedicure, and not to mention a visit to the spa. All in all, we are holding our own quite well! After all, we are Proverbs 31 women - women of virtue.

 

The nicknames Big Momma, Big daddy, Paw Paw, Maw Maw, and Ma'Dear have essentially become foreign to our youth. Grandparents are now referred to as Pops, PapPap, Nana, or G Mommy, which kind of loses the essence of what it means to be an honored elder in our families and communities. If we used the word “grandparents,” most of our grandchildren will not know who we are talking about. Remember when we could not wait for Sunday to come so we could all meet at our grandparents' house? There was always some cooking going on! For some reason, we as a culture have moved away from preserving family traditions and our identity, which infers that something is wrong with who and what we are. So I ask, has what we have treasured now become a sin? Those gatherings were quality time where siblings and their children enjoyed their cousins, exchanged family stories, reflected on the past, thanked God for where He brought us, and absorbed godly wisdom from our parents. Personally, this experience is something that makes me proud as a grandparent.

 

I enjoy planning and preparing favorite meals for my children, grandchildren, and friends! I receive a personal joy when a dinner request is made and I see the face of satisfaction and gluttony when those I love revel in the delicacies I have prepared for them. For example, I feel honored when my grandson Joshua will say, “Nana, are you going to make peach cobbler?” Whether I planned it or not, his favorite dessert becomes a part of my menu. When he says that, I know in his mind he wants the fresh fried corn to go with it. Of course, my other grandson Matthew subtly makes his request by asking what is on the menu. He will then proceed to remind me of the last time I fixed a particular dish and tell me it was “so good.” I know that for each of them they are “making their requests known” to Nana, and I will do whatever necessary to fill their little tummies. These special requests are not limited to my grandchildren. Even my adult children who are good cooks in their own rights also make their menu requests. I make sure that their favorites are always on the menu. These seemingly small gestures are one way for me to say “I love you.” What I treasure most, however, is seeking the big smiles on their faces at the end of special order meal.

 

The tradition of sharing a meal with family is a lost art form, which I believe is directly responsible for the deterioration of the true meaning of family. I think this also is responsible for the spirit of confusion, frustration, and disenchantment is overtaking our youth. Because of our failure to invest in young children, children are wandering aimlessly, looking for love in all the wrong places. This is why it is so important that we strive to love them enough to tell them what is right and wrong according to godly wisdom. We have to go “old school” and teach these children who is the parent/grandparents and let them know we refuse to allow them to dishonor and disrespect us, their parents, or any adult, period! That includes principals, teachers, paraprofessionals, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, custodial workers and the list goes on. Most of our grandchildren hold us in high esteem. They believe we can walk on water, make the sun shine, tell the rain to stop, and kiss a hurt and take the pain away. So, why not use this vote of confidence to let them know how important it is for them to get a good education? This can only begin when we aim to teach them at an early age to pull their pants up, wear belts, press their clothes, polish their shoes, and respect others and themselves. Not only should we tell them but we must insist that they do so.

 

Nevertheless, let's assure them that we want them to appreciate and experience the joys that come with transitioning from childhood to adolescence to adulthood; however, we must not do so at the risk of creating an opportunity to sin and let them grow up ignorant. Let's not love them so much that we “spare the rod and spoil the child.” Let's choose to apply discipline and hold them accountable for their actions and let them suffer the consequences. I am reminded of the phrase “Do you know where your children are?” Although it was very popular in the 1980's, it is a question that remains in minds on a regular basis. Our grandchildren and great-grand children are crying out, “Where is Granny? Pap Pap? Nana? Big Momma? Big Daddy?” Do they really know who we are? Let us endeavor to leave a rich inheritance with and for our children, teach them how to sew on a button, lace their shoes, wash, iron, clean, and cook (they eat). They will learn to appreciate the hard work.