“But you remain the same, and your years will never end. The children of your servants will live in your presence; their descendants will be established before You.” – Psalm 102:27-28
They said that the future lies in the children. But how can the children carry that truth on their feeble shoulders? When you say that to them, most probably they will not really understand what those words mean. Being a child myself before, all I wanted to do is to have fun. I just wanted to play (after studying of course), draw, watch my favorite cartoon shows, eat when I’m hungry and sleep when I’m tired. I also remember of wanting to grow up fast so I can do the things my parents restrict me to do (like traveling alone and staying up late to mention some). Honestly, I can’t say back then that I knew the meaning of the statement “The children is the hope of our future.”
But what I can remember is that I was taught to study well because my parents were working hard to pay for my tuition fees. That I was taught to respect the elders because it is good and soon, when I get old, the children will also respect me (you know, the “sowing and reaping” principle?). I have to eat vegetables, exercise, sleep during the afternoon and early at night because it’s healthy. I have to pray to God in the morning as I wake up, before eating, before sleeping and on “special occasions” and “emergencies”, go to the church with family every Sunday and attend Bible studies (I studied at a Christian grade school with Bible studies for students every week). I was taught to obey my parents and be nice with my siblings and to the other kids.
Sure, I received discipline from my parents and from older people who care for me. But I was not an all-time goody-good girl when I was younger.
So what’s my point here? Grown ups should guide children so they can be the hope that the future needs. They can’t just grow and be the good person our society needs. They need guidance, protection, discipline and love… From whom? From the older people who are with them. I believe that we (the grown ups) are the hope of our future because we are the ones who are guiding and teaching the next generation. These are the parents, the uncles, aunts, teachers, older sister/brother, etc. Whatever we impart to them, intentionally or not, it will stay in them and the fruits will be seen by the time they grow up. I heard a saying (that I now believe is true) in one of our gatherings at World Vision — “it takes a village to raise a child”.
I believe that this is also ordained by God to us. It’s true that as we get older, the more responsibilities are given to us whether we like it or not. It’s part of life. In this may we always ask for His empowerment and wisdom that we may contribute what is only good to the children who are under our sphere of influence. While in it may we find joy as we embrace this responsibility. If the future is on the shoulders of our children, then we should help by carrying those children on our shoulders.