God's "all-embracing power"

Our children may grow up, but they can never grow out of God's care.

In an address to the 1992 Democratic National Convention, the Reverend Jesse Jackson stated an appalling fact that underscores the plight of all too many young people in today's society. He said that for countless young men in troubled urban areas, jail is actually a step up. At least in jail, he explained, they are not targets for drive-by shootings; they are fed three meals daily; and they have a roof over their heads.

Watching the news commentators sadly acknowledge the accuracy of this statement, I couldn't help thinking of my own teenage sons. I asked myself, Will there ever be a time when I will no longer feel the maternal instinct to protect, guide, and nurture my children? In all honesty, I had to reply, No. This led to the next question: How could I continue appropriate child care of young people who are no longer small children?

Obviously, the demands of parenting change as children mature, and the teen years can be an opportunity to deepen our reliance on spiritual truths. We can become increasingly aware of the inseparable relationship of God and man as divine Parent and His spiritual offspring. An understanding of the beautiful unity that exists between God and man lays a solid foundation for wise parenting in all its phases, and results in very tangible and practical help.

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When children leave home, what then?
August 2, 1993

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