Let’s stop sacrificing our children

Published 12:06am Tuesday, May 28, 2013

After speaking with a friend the other day, most of our conversation was focused on our children. Being spiritually in tune with the world, we have finally realized that daily we should pray for our children because they are a heritage from the Lord. As Christian, and even secular parents, we want the best for our children, trying to steer them in the right direction and, even at times, going overboard with our gifts toward them. We find ourselves wanting our kids to have what we didn’t have growing up. But in reality, they will get just that only because of the changes that life takes us through from generations to generations. I’m very sure that my parents wanted us (all seven) to have better than what they had. It was evident, because just listening to my parents stories growing up, I can see that we were more well off, so to speak, than they were. And even now, I can see that my children are more well off, so to speak, than me, and their children, respectively.

But what sort of puzzles my mind is to see where some parents sacrifice their children for their own selfishness. It’s as though some of them are only interested in their happiness and their lifestyles that they forget to recognize that they have a child who is dependent upon them. I’ve heard some parents of the younger generation say, “I’m going to have my fun.”

Have your fun? That should have been thought of before they chose to bring another person into this world. Some of us, as parents — young and old — forget to focus on what parenting entails. Sure, we are not going to know everything about bringing up a child or even the fact that there is no handbook or pamphlet that specifically tells us how to raise our particular child.

When I think of parents wanting to “have their fun” so to speak, I think about the children in the Bible who had parents who sacrificed them.

When I look at child sacrifices in the Bible, I find that today is no different than it was then. There is nothing new under the sun. I see parents sacrificing their children every day. So what do I mean when I say child sacrificing. Surely, we do not consider putting children on a burning altar or offer them up to God as Abraham did. No, we sacrifice them every day by giving up or turning our backs on them; disowning them when they follow the wrong path and get in trouble. We sacrifice them when we resign, forfeit, or forgo our responsibilities as parents. We sacrifice them by abandoning, deserting or handing them over to others to satisfy our lifestyles, and we also sacrifice them by refusing or turning down their requests when they are in need.

I know that some of us, as parents, are put in predicaments where we are forced to sacrifice our children because of where our destiny takes us. We cannot care for our children when we are mentally incapable — retardation or substance abuse — or physically unable — illness or confined in prisons or jails. But there are those of us who sacrifice our children because of our selfishness — this is unacceptable. Throughout the Bible, God made provisions against the sacrificing of our children. He said it was wrong and those who did it would be punished. It was evident that God did not want child sacrifices to happen. Look at when he allowed Abraham a way of escape upon offering up his child, Isaac, as a sacrifice. Even Abraham knew that God would not allow him to do the inevitable act when he told the men following him that he and his son would be back. He very well knew that God was against child sacrifices and that he would allow him a way of escape. How many moms have brought into this world a child that the doctor said may be born with a lot of defects or may not be born? These moms did not sacrifice their children even with the ultimate advice from a doctor who said their child not being normal. What’s normal is to have love for a child, unconditionally. Let’s stop sacrificing our children, even the grown ones, because of our silly judgmental ways or selfishness. Let’s pray over them every day, not giving up on them, even until the end — ours or theirs.

 

Beverly Gibson is a Ferriday resident.