“As proof that you are children, God Sent the spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” (Gal 4:6)
As St Paul speaks these words to the Galatians, two realities shine forth. First, we are all children of God, which means that God wants the good for us, He is willing to sacrifice for us, He is merciful with us, and He is trustworthy.
This being true we can turn to Him with our every need. This fact alone inspires wonder and awe within us. “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son” (John 3:16). That being said the second reality is even more awe-inspiring—every parent therefore is called to be an image of God’s love for their children. Every mother is called to be a refuge for her children.
From the moment of conception it is our mother who has always been capable of soothing us and making everything alright. Every father is called to be a warrior who will fight for us, sacrifice for us, and lead us toward our future. Parenthood is truly a privileged vocation. It is privileged not only because mothers and fathers are co-creators with God, but also because mothers and fathers are called to be images and examples of God’s love. If they fail to be so, St Paul’s words lose something of their meaning.
At baptism every parent was entrusted with the “light of Christ” which burns in the hearts of their children. That light must be “kept burning brightly” which means nurturing it within the family and protecting it from the winds that blow in the culture outside. Today that task is much more difficult than it was even 10 years ago. The winds of the sexualized culture have access to our children through our televisions, movies, iPad, iPod, video game systems, web browsers, our neighbors’ children, and so forth. Many parents are careful to monitor television channels, the places their children go outdoors, and even their home computer, but forget about all of the internet access points in their children’s lives.
The hard truth today is that every device that has access to the internet has access to pornography, and pornography has become a “mainstream” term on many popular television shows. This means that your children are hearing about it and will look for it if you are not vigilant. Giving your child a device that can access the internet without setting parental controls is putting your child in the occasion of sin. There are many helpful tools to assist you in protecting the light of Christ.
At Integrity Restored we recommend Covenant eyes for all of your mobile devices and computers. Even if you don’t think your family has a problem—prevention is better than intervention. We also recommend you start educating your children about God’s amazing plan for love, marriage and family. A continuous conversation that begins at a young age will open up a dialogue and communicate to your kids that they can always come to you with questions or concerns. It lets them know that you are trustworthy, you want the good for them, you are willing to sacrifice for them, and you will be merciful with them. As you build confidence with them, you will be protecting and nurturing the “light of Christ” at the same time; and if they do get into trouble—online or off—your children will have the confidence to cry out, “Abba,