How to Be a Parent to Your Adult Children
And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath:
but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
It is God’s desire that we teach our children how to be responsible, because that is what they need as adults. As children mature, God desires that we step back and encourage them to meet the challenges of adulthood in His strength. Knowing when and how to release our children to make their own choices is an important decision.
When our adult children face decisions, it’s tempting to intervene and attempt to decide for them. However, we need to consider what God’s Word says: “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it” Proverbs 22:6 (NKJV). If we have been faithful in the necessary training, we must reach a point of rest and trust our children that they will discern God’s will for their own lives. If we haven’t trained them as children, then adulthood is not the time to start. Our time to be in authority over them has come and gone and we must release them into the Father’s care. And we do our part by praying for them, being a good example, providing Godly advice when asked, and affirming our love and His love for them.
Our children need to know that we express our love by daily interceding for them in prayer. We can go to God and ask Him to father them and to guide them to the right choices. Our job is not to usurp the role of the Holy Spirit in their lives. Our job is to pray that they will be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and HE will guide them into all truth.
There will be times when we don’t agree with their choices. And at times, when we are convinced that we are right and they are wrong, it’s easy to voice our opinion without first seeking God. But this is a most crucial time to seek Godly wisdom. We must allow the Holy Spirit to govern if, how and when we are to advise our adult children. If our children’s hearts are open to God’s voice, they will discern His will for their lives, more clearly than we will. If our children are making choices that are contrary to the Word, we need God’s wisdom as to our role in bringing advice.
Regardless of our children’s maturity or age, they need to know how much God loves them. And how much we love them and believe in them. Children who know that their parents are proud of them will feel confident and secure to step into their God-given dreams. They will be assured that we love them for who they are and not for what they do. And that our love is unconditional and unwavering.
If you didn’t receive this kind of affirmation from your parents, you may feel unable to give it to your children. This was an area of difficulty for me because my parents died when I was in my early twenties. But by God’s grace, I understood the importance of showing love to my children and have seen them flourish because of it. And through His grace you can also show your love to your adult children.
Will you choose to release your adult children to God’s care? Now, that’s the choice-driven life!
Today’s Bible Reading:
Isa 14-16; Matt 28
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