I did actually write something up yesterday but I didn't like it much and was too tired to change it by the time we got home from AWANA. Since obedience and submission both stick in the craw of a red-neck, I guess I'm not too far off putting them together in one post. :)
In all seriousness, we red-necks just simply cannot stand to be told what to do. We don't like the government doing it, and, unfortunately, we don't even like God doing it. Like many people, we ignore the parts of scripture that bother us and enjoy the parts we feel benefit us.
After spending most of my life doing that, God has finally brought me to a place where I realize that not only is it wrong, it's extremely detrimental to my children. Over the past year we have actually been learning to submit together. It hasn't been easy, but lately it's been better.
It's amazing to watch God work and change people's hearts, especially when those hearts belong to your children. They aren't perfect, and I remind them that I know they never will be, but that God forgives them.
Our children do need to learn to obey and submit or they will have a hard time in life (trust me, btdt). Sometimes we get so caught up in making them perfect in the eyes of those watching, family members, church leaders, teachers, etc., that we forget that, while the reality is that people will judge us based on our children's actions, we should not so much worry about what others think, but whether our children are truly submitting and being obedient, or just doing it because they have to. We don't want them to be sitting down on the outside while standing on the inside.
Yesterday one of the moms at the 21 Days of Prayer high school FB page talked about how she had made bad decisions when she went off on her own because her parents weren't there to lecture her. I really liked her idea that we need to help our children understand that their disobedience is not so much against us as it is against God. I can really see how this can help prepare them to make right choices on their own when Mom & Dad aren't around. Our children's decisions in life should be based, not on experience, but what God's word tells us.
I think the best part of this advice is that it is a constant reminder to me as a parent that these children are not mine. God has entrusted them to me to raise for Him. Like Hannah with little Samuel, one day I will have to release them and go home where all I can do then is pray for them. Wouldn't it be better to start that now than wait until the time comes? Then I can more than "hope" they will do OK, I can trust them to do the right thing. I think I might sleep better at night. :)