Recently, a couple of friends and I worked together to send cards of encouragement to college students from our church. As we worked, we visited, and the discussion turned to the guidelines given out to pregnant women.
We discussed how with our firstborns (who are now nearing their thirties), we were told to always put our babies on their stomachs to sleep. A few years later, we were told to use a wedge or blanket and always have our babies propped up on their sides. Soon the guidelines had changed to say you should always lay babies on their backs to sleep.
One grandma told of the guidelines her daughter has been given recently. Did you know that pregnant moms are advised not to take baths? Doctors suggest showers only. Today, the guideline to place babies on their backs for sleeping remains after nearly 20 years. But new parents are told to never put anything in the bed with the child. No blanket, no stuffed animal, nothing.
It’s interesting to think of the changes over the years in what we humans think is best. Some of the things that the world now promotes as “normal,” God tells us in His Word are actually an abomination to Him. (Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 20:13, Romans 1:26-26, etc.)
Sin is always sin. It’s missing the mark, falling short of all God knows is best. Our world has been infested with sin since Adam and Eve sinned in the garden. And this sin condemns us. “The wages of sin is death.” (Romans 6:23)
Our kids are dealing with a changing culture… a culture that has legalized sin. A culture where more and more people are experiencing the hurt that comes from not walking in God’s ways. The Ten Commandments are not ten suggestions. They are not meant to take away our fun or steal our joy. God has given us direction in His Word to help life go better for us. As parents, we may give our kids commands for their own good….. “Stop!” (Don’t run into the street where a car is driving.) “Don’t drink five cans of soda” (or you’ll be throwing up). “Go to bed” (or you’ll be too tired to function well or your body will get run down and you’ll get sick, etc.) We say these things not to be mean, but to help. It’s the same with God and His rules. He has these things in place not to ruin our fun, but to help us.
How we pray that our kids take God at His Word and obey Him! How we pray that their consciences don’t become damaged (I Timothy 4:2) and that they have the maturity to show Christ’s compassion to peers or relatives who don’t honor God’s commands. We pray that we’ll all “be God’s children without any faults among people who are crooked and corrupt. You will shine like stars among them in the world as you hold firmly to the word of life.” (Philippians 2: 15b-16a GW)
In this changing world, some things never change. God is perfect and He is the same yesterday, today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8) God’s Word doesn’t change. (Isaiah 40:8) His love for us is constant. (Jeremiah 31:3) He continually offers us forgiveness through Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit gives us strength to repent, to turn from sin, and to walk in God’s ways.
And when someone we love gets mixed up and strays, let’s remember that Jesus our Good Shepherd goes after that one lost lamb… No one loves them more than God does.
In spite of what the world throws at us, we can rest in our mighty God’s loving care. He sees the whole picture even if we don’t.
“Come to Me, all who are tired from carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Place My yoke over your shoulders, and learn from Me, because I am gentle and humble. Then you will find rest for yourselves because My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30 GW)