Testimonies of a Father: Care for Their Growth

Fall is approaching, which is making this man very happy. You see, with the coming of fall it means that I will not have to mow the yard too much longer. I’ve never been a huge fan of well groomed patches of grass. However, with a new home came the new responsibility of keeping the lawn looking good. There are some guys out there who enjoy cutting their grass; those gents are free to visit my place anytime they like. But there was one night recently when I did at least get a good thought out of the chore…

The grass in our yard has been growing non-stop this summer as Bluefield, Virginia has seen tons of rain come our way. If I don’t cut the grass at least once a week, my house may just find itself in the middle of a hayfield! However there were a few weeks recently where I just could not get out to mow. Sure enough, the rains kept coming and our grass got taller and taller. Well, it had to be cut at some point. When  I finally got a chance to cut my grass, my poor little mower found itself fighting a losing battle. The grass was tall and still wet even after a few days of drying. As I mowed, there were a good number of times the mower cut off as if to say, “I need to take a break, boss.” My usual 40 minute job became a task that was spread out over 4 nights of cutting and raking up the grass so it would not decay back into fertilizer. It was just hard work. On the last night, as I was raking up the grass into piles that we can bag up and take to our landfill, I thought of how much easier the chore would have been if I had just made time sooner to deal with my problem.

Sure enough, God decided to remind me right there that I need to take this same approach with my children. My pair are very young, and so discipline is still something that most of the time is not very difficult. However, as a parent who fears the Lord I know that I must make every effort to make sure that bad habits and bad behavior do not have a chance to grow out of control in the lives of my kids. My role as a Dad is to pay attention to the way my children are behaving, and then make it a priority to remove the things that have no place in the life of a good child. If I’m not caring for them well, then their bad habits may become much worse than I could imagine and a much more difficult issue to resolve and clean up.

The biggest problem that comes from not caring for what habits are growing in the lives of my children is that I know these bad habits will lead them to sin, and distance themselves from God if they are not challenged and brought into the rightful submission that is due a parent. One issue my wife and I have worked to correct is how our oldest child takes things without any respect for people or their property. Sure, it’s funny to see them grab the biscuit off your plate while you are not looking, but what would their life be like if they were never taught that stealing is wrong…and not just because you should never take a biscuit from your daddy!

If a child is never taught to respect the property of another person, how will they know that stealing is wrong? It is a sin against the Lord, and it could have consequences that could hurt their life. The sin puts them at odds with God and the fact that they took from another means that they could face retaliation from the one they stole from. Bad habits need to be dealt with. If you think an overgrown lawn is a tough issue to resolve, try convincing someone that they are a sinner and that their actions need to change! If we let sin grow in the lives of our children, we may one day find that getting them to honor God again may be a very difficult task.

This pile of grass filled two 13 gallon trash bags.

So here is a picture to consider.  This is the pile of dead grass that I had left after cutting the grass. The overgrown issue was something I could fix, but it could have taken much less work if I had cared for it better. Children grow whether we are ready for it or not. Please be sure to watch for problems in their lives and keep your eyes on the concerns you see.

Written by Timothy Hegerich / Edited by Caroline Hegerich

There is truth in our world, and it lies within the word of the One who created the world.  It is my prayer that my thoughts and writings echo this truth and inspire you to seek it for your life today!

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