It’s one of those unwritten proverbs that has been repeated enough times that we tend to think it must be true and is probably found somewhere in the Bible, even though we don’t know where that might be. You probably had it said to you the first time your parents observed you dealing with some problem with your children. “Well, you are paying for your raising now, son.” I am wondering how expensive my raising must have been and how long it will take to get it paid for. Maybe I’m paying for some of my siblings raising as well as mine. But I’m sure they remember my actions and think maybe they have been paying for some of my raising. Since I’m the youngest of the crew they tend to think I didn’t have any of the struggles that they had as the older ones. It has been said more than once that by the time I came along mother and dad were tired out and didn’t have the energy left to correct me like they had done with the older ones. But it always seemed to me that they had plenty of energy left to administer any discipline needed.
How much would it cost to pay for our raising? Solomon said that “foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child. The rod of correction will drive it from them.” Wouldn’t it be great if every child came with an instruction Manuel? It never seems to matter how many children you have brought up, the next one is going to be a whole new game. When we had all daughters and brought them up the best we knew how we felt that we had experienced plenty of life as a parent. But now seeing five grandsons growing up along with four granddaughters, it is very obvious that boys are completely different from girls. But then all the girls are different from each other. Truthfully every child that is born enters the world with a brand new personality and a unique outlook on life.
How many times have you heard people marvel as they said, “Kids are so different now a days”? I don’t have the slightest doubt that our parents said the same thing when they watched us grow up. Do you remember some of the comments that were made when rock-n-roll music became the standard for young people? Older generations have been worried about the younger generation from the days of Adam and Eve and it will continue to be that way until the Lord comes again.
When we start thinking that the price for our raising has gotten too high for us to pay we need to remember these things: The same child that you think is driving you crazy will one day bring some of the greatest grandchildren into your life that you have ever imagined. Then the price you are paying will seem very cheap. Remember that some folks said about you that you would never amount to anything and look how far you’ve come. Remember what a difference one or two people made in your whole life by believing in you and telling you how much they believed in you when most others didn’t. Perhaps you can be that person for some young person you know today that is struggling with growing up. Finally, remember that you can’t judge anyone’s life based on a snapshot. A snapshot catches one moment in a life made up of millions of moments. When you start to say something unkind about a young person based on some incident, just remember you saw an action, not a life, judge accordingly.