Last week, we started what we’ve all been wanting to start: praying for our boys.
For each day, Brooke has written a page or two on a specific topic with ten correlating scriptures to pray over our boys and some questions to ponder on each subject.
We prayed for heart change, obedience, overcoming fears, integrity, wisdom, pride, and honor.
Let’s just take a look at overviews from each, shall we?
I loved when Brooke talked about mothers of girls not quite understanding the rowdiness of boys. I don’t mean this to be unkind to mothers of girls because I was once one of them and thought the same thing. “Why don’t they discipline their children?” I would often wonder if I saw boys acting like the Tasmanian Devil from the Looney Toons cartoons.
And then I had a boy of my own and suddenly, my expectations of what is acceptable and what is not changed – in a very good way.
Having boys has forced me to prioritize what is truly important – and it’s usually not what I once thought was so critical in the past.
Boys are boys. How’s that for wisdom? But, as Brooke states on page 58, “…until the King of Kings and Lord of Lords turns your son’s heart of stone to a heart of flesh, his actions will be motivated by what is pleasing to himself rather than by what is pleasing to the Lord.”
Yes. Aren’t we all this way? Heart change is critical if we want to get anywhere – which is probably why we pray for this first, right?
This one is critical, sisters. Boys need to be taught to obey because “obedience and submission to authority are normal parts of life. For the rest of their days, our sons will have to submit to someone or something. Even if your son becomes the CEO of the biggest, most powerful company (or country), he will still have to answer to his Maker. Training him now to respect and submit to authority sets him up for success of the greatest kind” (page 63).
I just had a conversation with my grandmother about a boy who didn’t like his baseball coach and felt he had been treated unfairly. He wasn’t in the starting lineup so he walked off the field and didn’t play.
I don’t know all of the details. Maybe he was indeed treated unfairly but this I know: he will need to know how to respect authority because as Brooke states above, it’s an inevitable part of life. I want to raise-up men who, even if they don’t love the person who has authority over them, will still show kindness, respect, and integrity – in essence, a good attitude.
Fear is at the root of all negative emotions. Jealousy, anger, bitterness, and resentment can all be traced back to the fear of something. This life requires courage – courage to stand-up for what is right, courage to follow Jesus, courage try something even if it terrifies us. Those who live in fear, live in chains. None of us wants our boys to live in chains.
My three and I just discussed integrity the other day. “What’s inbeggidy, mama?” asked my five year old. After a quick pronunciation lesson, I answered this: “Integrity is doing the right thing – even when no one is watching.” When we do the right thing no matter what, we reveal a heart that has been transformed from stone to flesh.
Of course we want our boys to be wise! We want them to be good men but we also want them to be wise, good men, don’t we? (p.78) This is best taught through everyday life and the myriad of mistakes we make to shape our wisdom. I love the questions Brooke and her husbands ask their boys when they’re arguing:
Who are you choosing to love the most right now? Who are you caring most for in this moment?
Wisdom is born when we can see outside ourselves.
Pride is a sneaky one and it can wreak massive destruction on careers, marriages, and relationships of any kind – really, anything. While I do want my boys to take pride in their work, I want them to not be prideful – there is a difference.
If we have eyes to see, God will teach us so much more through our mistakes – and this is true for our boys as well.
Contrary to popular beliefs, chivalry is not dead. Respectful boys who give honor to their family name will be blessing for generations to come.
So for our discussion this week, answer any of the following in the comments section:
1. Consider your own parenting style. Is the way you interact with you son targeting his heart and motivating him toward real heart-change, or do you mainly focus on changing behavior?
2. Why do you think it’s important for men to develop strength?
3. Ask your husband (or another man in your life) what he thinks about letting boys overcome their fears and be adventurous. What are some things you learned from him that can be applied to your parenting?
4. Did you ever give something your best shot and still come up short? How did it feel?
Please feel free to discuss any of the questions at the end of each day’s subject – you don’t have to respond to just these four if there is something you really had on your heart to share.
Next week, we’ll be discussing chapters 8 – 14.