Friday, September 09, 2011

A Mother's Prayer

The history of John Newton is often mentioned as a proof of the deep and lasting impression which a mother may produce upon the mind of her child. He had a pious mother. She often retired to her closet, and placing her hand upon his youthful head, implored God's blessing upon her boy. These prayers and instructions sunk deep into his heart. He could not but revere that mother. He could not but feel that there was a holiness in such a character, demanding reverence and love. He could not tear from his heart, in after life, the impressions then produced. Though he became a wicked wanderer, though he forsook friends and home, and every virtue; the remembrance of a mother's prayers, like a guardian angel, followed him wherever he went. He mingled in the most evil and disgraceful scenes of a sailor's life, and while surrounded with guilty associates, in midnight revelry, he would fancy he felt the soft hand of his mother upon his head, pleading with God to forgive and bless her boy. He went to the coast of Africa, and became even more degraded than the savages upon her dreary shores. But the soft hand of his mother was still upon his head, and the fervent prayers of his mother still thrilled in his heart. And this influence, after the lapse of many guilty years, brought back the prodigal, a penitent and a child of God; elevated him to be one of the brightest ornaments of the Christian church, and to guide many sons and daughters to glory. What a forcible comment is this upon the power of maternal influence! And what encouragement does this present to every mother to be faithful in her efforts to train up her child for God! Had Mrs. Newton neglected her duty, had she even been as remiss as many Christian mothers, her son, to all human view, might have continued in sin, and been an outcast from heaven. It was through the influence of the mother that the son was saved. Newton became afterward a most successful preacher of the Gospel, and every soul which he was instrumental in saving, as he sings the song of redeeming mercy, will, through eternity, bless God that Newton had such a mother.


by John Abbott, 1833, Worcester, Mass.
Published by the American Tract Society

As I look upon my children I often wonder who they will grow up to be. I pray fervently for their hearts and souls. I pray that not only will they know the saving power of Jesus Christ in their live, but that they will live their lives wholly devoted to Him. I don't want my kids to think of salvation as fire insurance. We spend time in the morning pouring over God's word together. We spend time during our group time studying Who Is God? Last night we had a whole discussion about how our inward appearance can greatly affect our outward appearance. It's things like this that I hope will turn my children's hearts towards Jesus. No matter what though, I will always pray for my children, just as Mother Newton prayed for her dear John.

God is a God of mercy and grace. As my children grow I have seen times of doubt in some of their lives. I have seen one of my precious children question this God of the universe. It always sends me to my knees. I know I have to let this child grow up and make their own decisions. I know one day this child will go their own way. All I can do is give this child the tools and foundation to build their life on the ROCK. If they choose to move to sandy ground I will pray, pray, pray. I will never cease praying for my kids and I have told each one of them that.

Not too long ago, we had an incident where one of my children was battling a sin in their life. This child had hardened their heart and would not show repentance of this sin for any amount of begging and pleading. I finally looked said child in the eye and told them a mother's prayers never cease. I have seen some change in this child. While not the repentance I was hoping for I have to believe that they are working towards that just by the change in their attitude.

Cleaning my home and homeschooling are all important to me. Still, they come in dead last to my childrens' souls and relationship with our God. I would live in a messy house with ignorant children if it meant every one of my children could enjoy a lasting full relationship with Jesus Christ. I'm so thankful that I don't have to and that God has shown me that my childrens' hearts are receptive to the Word of God. I am thankful that I have time in my day to clean and homeschool and share Jesus with my children.

I just pray that my relationship with God is one that overflows into my home and my childrens' lives. Amen.

1 comment:

sb said...

Thanks for the good work on John Newton. However, the font makes it hard to read.