Proxy~ the authority to represent someone else
I was listening to the radio on the way home from town yesterday. The program on the Christian station was asking us, the audience, to share a time when someone of importance in our lives (parent, teacher, pastor, friend) said something that really cut us to the core… you know the kind of comment. It’s the one that you never forget. The comment that takes a part in shaping how you see yourself and affects the decisions you make.
The radio program asked callers to share who said it, what they said, and how that comment affected them.
One caller shared how she had been emotionally abused growing up and how this had shaped her self image, as well as her view of others. Lots of abuse happens when we don’t watch our tongues. She also shared how finding Jesus had brought her healing and corrected her thinking. And then she said something that raised the hair on the back of my neck.
This woman said, in her own way, that the enemy tries to sell us ideas when we are young in an attempt to stunt God’s plans. These comments that cut us to the core and become defining moments in the course we choose—that their whole purpose is to discourage us and disparage our willingness to step out and be powerful in the Hand of the Almighty.
The show’s host was stopped by her comment as well. “What if that’s true?” he asked.
What if the enemy, not being all knowing, but having some idea about God’s plans, begins in the beginning?
Immediately I could think of one or two things that were spoken to me, over me, around me growing up that I am sure the enemy has used to scare me to the side lines. How I wish that once we get on His path, we stayed on the path!!
Of course, the devil would like to keep us from ever trusting in Jesus and becoming Children of God. But when that fails, he doesn’t want us to flourish and experience the full life Jesus spoke of in John 10:10.
It sickens me when I think that my own children, all at different places in their development, are already targets. From the almost 2 year old to the 19 year old who is ready to launch into “real” life…
We Christians talk all the time about how God loves us and has a plan for each person’s life, and too often we forget to remember that we also have an enemy who hates God and hates us and will stop at nothing to deceive us out of the good things our Father has prepared.
When my husband was attending a Christian college, during spring break, the college offered interim classes. This equaled longer hours in concentrated study to earn extra credits, and since wives at that time were invited to take a free class each semester, I took advantage of a class here or there.
Spiritual Warfare is the class that probably made the biggest impact on my world view. We read the book “Bondage Breaker” by Neil T. Anderson and listened to a seasoned instructor lecture about his experiences in dealing with spiritual warfare.
I was riveted. I grew up in a denomination that didn’t really touch much on this subject. There was so much good stuff, but the the 2 most practical carry-aways I brought home from that class were these:
Parents have God-given spiritual authority in their children’s lives.
This authority trumps any authority other people have in their lives, and when they marry that authority passes to their spouse.
Prayer is the greatest instrument we have in carrying out this authority.
Our prayers still have wonderful power in our married children’s lives, we just don’t have first place, so don’t ever stop praying!
We are the proxy for our children. We represent them and their eternal interests. God gives them to us to love and train right back to His arms. There is all this practical and necessary life we have to teach them, starting with how to walk and talk and feed themselves all the way to how to live and manage to be thriving adults on their own. Woven through all that we are also expected to teach them Who the Author of this life is, how to walk with Him, talk with Him, and live FOR Him. We can’t do any of it well without prayer.
Prayer helps us steer our children along the path God has prepared. It helps us discern God’s will for them as well as discern their strengths, weaknesses and needs.
Through prayer we can bless them, build them up, encourage them, equip them, protect them, fight for them, and affect the course of their lives in so many ways we cannot even fathom, but know it’s true because God’s Word says it is so.
It is an awesome responsibility. So often I feel inadequate (because on my own I really am). It makes me aware of how important it is to keep my relationship with God tight. It’s when I am not paying attention that I miss the road signs. Sometimes I forget to remember what I say…
Holy Spirit, be in control of my tongue.
Keep me from speaking rash words.
Make me intentional about everything I say, only building up and never tearing down.
Help me to guide our children to You, only encouraging them and their fervor for You!
Protect them from the enemy and his plans.
Prepare them to walk the path You have prepared for them, because I know it’s the best one there is.