Sunday, December 4, 2011

Born to be Wild!

Isaiah 5:4
What more was there to do for my vineyard that I have not done in it? When I expected it to yield grapes, why did it yield wild grapes?

Two parents, three children.

Same rules. Same structure. Same expectations.

Lots of family time at home and on vacation.

Lots of one-on-one when the needs arise.

Parents united and devoted to teaching, nurturing, and loving each child for the unique human being he or she is. Doing everything imaginable to ensure their children mature into responsible adults. giving them every opportunity to realize success.

Child #1 enters college, lasts one semester, then drops out . . . to start a business venture with a partner in the then infancy of computer programming. She is a millionaire today.

Child #2 completes college with a business degree and is gainfully employed from the get-go. A virtual success story.

Child #3 , who has a genius I.Q., refuses to even apply to college. Instead, he works with his hands, bums around from job to job, lives hand-to-mouth. The wild grape.

Parenting doesn't come with a road map. It doesn't show us the detours and the pot-holes. There is no warranty on the GPS.

And, it's the hardest job anyone of us can ever do.

So, how do we navigate this rugged terrain, this uncharted territory? How can we be the best parents possible for our children?

My grandmother's advice is the best I've ever heard: "Teach them right from wrong, and love them to death."

That's all you can do.

And, pray God will tend to the rest . . .

What aspect of parenting or of being parented have you found most difficult?

Will you pray with me?
Your word, Father, teaches us right from wrong. You love us, your wild grapes, so much, that you were willing to send your beloved Son to die for our sins. Graft us securely to Your true vine so we can bear good fruit for Your Kingdom. Amen.

Psalms 148, 149, 150 or 114, 115
Isaiah 5:1-7
2 Peter 3:11-18
Luke 7:28-35


  1. To tell you very truthfully,I never had a problem with my parents,when I was growing up.But now that my daughter is growing up,I do face problems..initially it came when I separated from my husband...and it took a lot of patience on my part to get confidence and build a bond with her...All I know now is that I love her like crazy,I have no one else,and nor does she..we both have realized that and I am thankful to God that we share something more than just a mother and daughter.
    Great post Martha,you have me in tears writing this..

  2. Praying for your wild grape, to keep his spirit but become a bit more focused and tamed, so that his restless heart can settle itself and he can find happiness, peace and prosperity. We all have them in our family, and they certainly need our prayers. A good reminder.

  3. This hits home...but my kids are still young, well teenagers(not so young)teaching them right from the wrong is ok...but, steering them away from what we consider as wrong but, which is right for them...that is a bit difficult. They are at such a age when logic is what they think it is.

  4. Thank you so much, ladies, for stopping by and leaving such splendid comments!
    @Alpana - I rejoice that your daughter and you have such a marvelous relationship! Having a daughter myself, I know what it's like to go through the troubling, sometimes rocky, years, but to come out on the other side with a stronger relationship than ever. I know she brings you such joy; I can tell by your touching words . . .
    @Jessica - They DO need our prayers more than most. The "Wild Grape" in this reflection is now in his 50s, never married, and still "does his own thing". A marvelous craftsman, though!
    @Janu - I have the joy, and sometimes the headache, of raising four through teen years. The youngest is now 18 and, yes, he knows everything and thinks we are clueless. His logic is faulty indeed. It is difficult to steer them in the way we know they should go. I wish you all the best in this as I know you are a great parent!

    Blessings to all on this wonderful Sunday!

  5. I am still new to this parenting journey as my son is just two and a half but I understand in theory what this means. I think about this too, I just have to teach William God's word and will and pray for him and love him but ultimately after I have truly done all I can, it is out of my hands and in to Gods.

  6. While it is true that the environment provided is the same, it is the soil that receives the seed of parenting and the nurturing care that is different in so many ways. This reminds me actually of the parable of the sower. The sower does all he can but ultimately what flourishes and what languishes is out of his hands. Trust me this has been a hard lesson learned for me as well.

  7. Hi, Colleen and Lynne, and thanks so much for dropping in today!
    @Colleen - You are so wise! So many parents assume they are in control of their children when, in truth, only God is ultimately in control. Our children belong to Him; we are the caregivers. It sounds like little William is in the best of hands! :)
    @Lynne - I love your comparison to the parable of the sower; that image actually crossed my mind as I was writing this. Also, since every child's personality is unique, the same environment doesn't guarantee the same outcome. It's hard, though, when the "wild grape" causes such pain and worry for the parents.

    Blessings to you both!

  8. You're right..parenting is not easy, but thank God for my wife, cuz I learned a lot from all the Promise Keepers men's events from the 1990's etc...that and all the bible studies and small groups kicked in when I needed them most! Something stuck, Martha!! :-)

  9. Hi, Bernie!
    We can learn so much from our spouses and other parents as we raise our children. Glad to know that what you gained in knowledge came in handy at the right time!
    Thanks so much for stopping by, brother!
    Blessings always!

  10. I agree wholeheartedly with your grandmother’s wise advice. “Teach them right from wrong, and love them...” And you’re exactly right: that’s all we can do. Teach them to know the Lord as their Shepherd, and wherever He leads them is up to Him.

  11. Hello.
    I am not a parent, but I too agree with your wise grandmother. I come from a large family. My dad (when he was alive) was the only one with a job. Times were tough & we were poor, but we learned manners & respect from an early age & no matter times were hard, there was always an abundance of love in our house. I think that's all parents can do is to give their children the best start in life by setting the foundation upon which their children can build & grow. After that, it's up to God where he directs their footsteps. Every family has a "stray" or two. You just have to have patience, love & understanding & allow him/her to make & learn from their mistakes, even if it goes against everything you believe in.

    Thanks for sharing & visiting. I loved your comments today. LOL...have you caught your breath yet?

    For ref:
    Our Candlelight Of Love

  12. I love your grandmother's advice! I'm writing that gem down for if I ever have kids one day. It's true, even with my siblings (there are 4 of us) I see a bit of a wild grape in each of us - we've taken different paths, redefined success and failure and screamed HELLO WORLD, THIS IS WHO I AM...OR WHO I THINK I MIGHT BE...TODAY....MAYBE.

    Beautiful post! I loved it!


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