Tuesday, May 25, 2010

College - A Crucible

Our family is approaching another one of life's milestones. Our third child, our son, will be graduating from our homeschool in a few week's time, and grabbing hold of the first rung of that ladder he will climb for the next four years or so, college. He is full of anticipation, excitement, and I dare say a smidgen of trepidation as he looks forward to what lies ahead. I would not have it any other way. The freshness of youth, unjaded by the experiences and understandings of their parents is a necessary and needed quality for our stalwart young ones. It can never be regained, once lost; and as I have sent each of my children out into the world, I have determined this very characteristic to be inspiring rather than worrisome.

For many parents who can see clearly the battle that rages within this world, it is a fearful thing to send our kids out into it. We are well aware of how subtle and persistent our enemy is, and the stronghold he has upon our country's campuses and classrooms. How we would love to have been able to send our young men and women to institutions that uphold the truth of God's Word, but most of us do not have the means to do so. So our hearts quake and tremble, and we fall upon our knees beseeching the God Who Is Sufficient For The Needs Of His People, El Shaddai. Our children seem so innocent and so like babes in the woods, or perhaps we are all too aware of their weaknesses. Either way, we wish... oh, how we wish we could be there to intercede and protect them. The fact that we cannot is a fearful thing.

The green-ness of our young shoots used to concern me. As I listened to them I took in their stories and responses, their challenges and the big dreams they saw as solutions. At the same time, I watched and listened with eyes and ears that "knew better". Their naivete was clear to me, and brought remembrances to my mind of similar days years ago when I too was such an idealist. Initially, I fretted in advance for the days ahead when they would run up against life's realities and have their dear hopes dashed. How I wished to spare them, to safeguard my treasures.

How upside down were my heart and mind!

It is true. Fathers and Mothers, you are sending your lambs among wolves. Look around and see. It is as the Lord foretold. *Mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.

They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men oppose the truth—men of depraved minds, who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected.

This is the deceptive world we are releasing our own into. It is good for you to know this, and it is better for you to respond on bended knees interceding for them. But Christ is the Victor! And the brave hearts and minds, the teachings of Truth you have poured into them, the equipping you have bestowed upon them, all these will serve as weapons for them against the enemy. Place your faith and confidence in the work He has been doing through you and in them, His Treasures, for the day has come for them to be tried and tested.

**But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Your children will face the opposition, but the trying and testing of their faith will be done in the Lord's crucible. Hear His words of response to the realities around us, and may they be your prayer for your young ones, and may their visionary inspiration be His breath.

* II Timothy 2:1-8

** II Timothy 2:14-17

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