“I wanted to watch the cartoons but I didn’t want to get my heart dirty” confesses my five year old quite honestly. His older brother corrects him that it’s his conscience, not really his heart, that gets dirty. I love these conversations which most often happen in the car. We are on our way home from the dentist where the staff always feel the need to entertain you in the chair with not one but two televisions. I feel doubtful. It isn't that the content would be so harmful but it's hard to explain which channels might be OK to watch when we don't have television in our own home. It has been the same when he plays with the neighbor's grandson, but they just shut it off out of respect so I don't need to worry what the adults are watching while he's in the room. With all my doubts in raising my children so that they would remain believing, it always warms my heart to hear these small examples of confessing their faith.
I seem to have the hardest time connecting with my oldest son. He is perfectly content to read a book or play legos any chance he gets and does not seem to need my attention very often. Before he learned to talk I looked forward to the day I could visit my own children. I have occasionally tried writing notes to him to remind him I still think about him every day. There was once a time we thought he might be our only child. Our next son is four years younger so in some ways it feels like he is alone. Although he spends plenty of time with his brother, the age difference can sometimes bring an element of unfairness and can make daily discipline difficult. In some ways he is also closer to me as he spent four years as the only child in a home of adults and when we do discuss matters of faith I’m always amazed at the understanding God has given him. His faith, even at a young age, is already guiding me at times.
I am trying to hang on tight as my two eldest continue to outgrow my simple understandings. Per a recent presentation at mother’s camp, we are in the “sweet spot” of the many phases of raising a family. All our children are at home and innocently believing. Still, the worries come often. How will we make it through the teenage years?
I'm a little embarrassed to admit this useless worry started when my oldest son was still a baby. I say useless because it has profited me nothing. I am no more ready today when the teenage years are just around the corner than I was ten years ago. As Jesus says in the book of Matthew, “Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” (6:34). Just as He has in the past, God will give enough strength to get through even that stage of life. The congregation of God is full of help and support, even when I don’t know to ask for it.
In the meantime I will enjoy this “sweet spot” to the fullest. I enjoy having children old enough to discuss matters of faith while still being able to cuddle the innocent babies. My duty is to teach my children all I know about faith and God will give the increase. I can take comfort in the words of song #321: “So, come what may, here I can stay. My heart today has everything I need.” We love to occasionally end the day with Songs and Hymns of Zion and always with the preaching of the gospel. It is a good way to go to sleep content and happy.
Poikkeusolojen vuoksi radion ja netin välityksellä lähetetyt Suviseurat saivat kuulijoiden palautteen perusteella positiivisen vastaanoton. Historiallisten Suviseurojen järjestelyt sujuivat suunnitelmien mukaisesti, eikä suurempia häiriöitä ilmennyt. Seurojen keskeinen sanoma välittyi kaikkialle maailmaan ja seurapuheet käännettiin yhdeksälle kielelle.