This week I’ve been praying for friends’ grown and almost-grown children who are in heartbreaking trouble. None of these situations is irredeemable, and I cling to God’s promise to bring good – as He has done many times for me. But that kind of blessing is born from depths of anguish and brokenness. And sometimes that kind of brokenness is avoidable. So children of mine, children of God’s, listen to a mother’s heart for you. Listen to someone else’s trouble.
- Please don’t follow someone you don’t trust. They may lead you into danger, and they won’t stand up for you in court or visit you in the hospital afterward.
- Please don’t drink and drive. Even when you think you are fine. You are always going to think you are fine.
- Please don’t drive distracted in any way. Don’t text and drive. Don’t check your email and drive. Don’t turn around in your seat or let your eyes, your hands or your attention wander. A lifetime of regret could be the price for a small convenience.
- Please don’t put anything into your body unless you know exactly what it is and it has a healthy purpose in your life. You only get the one body.
- Please protect all your relationships. Communicate. Practice loyalty. Take the high road. Love well.
- Please be willing to admit when you are wrong. Walk away from conflicts you don’t need to win. A small problem can quickly become a big problem when it becomes a matter of pride.
- Please don’t break the law. There are so many ways we justify small infractions to ourselves, but it can cost you your whole future.
- Please exchange the pleasure of the moment for long-range goals. Whether this means putting off a purchase or putting off an experience, delayed gratification is the hallmark of wisdom and maturity. It is almost never wrong to wait.
- Please seek help when the struggle is too hard for you. Find a friend, a pastor, a teacher or a counselor who will walk beside you and help you. Don’t give up until you find someone.
- Please know that your Parent will always love you. As a human parent, there is nothing my children could do or tell me that would make me stop loving them. I can only say that because I know that is how God feels about me.
I am a hypocrite. I have done some of these things. (No, I am not going to tell you which ones.) But I pray that God will keep me from doing them again, and that He will keep you from doing them at all, because you have great, eternal value, and there is Someone who loves you more than life.
Feel free to add your own thoughts. Feel free to send this to your kids.