This is a heavy, wordy post that has been on my heart for months and well, really years now. As a mom, and I think especially as a boy mom, I feel a need to raise my son as a Godly young man who has a heart for God. I'll be honest, since I found out he was a boy I was worried that I wouldn't know what to do to build his character into a Christ-like heart. Yes, he has wonderful examples in our family, but I worried about the influences outside of home and church. I struggled with how I would show him that it is cool to be a teenage boy that praises God, prays in public, and isn't afraid to be a Christian when others around him may not be. I worry about what he sees as role models in sports and pop culture. Is this the kind of person I want my kid to look up to???
Last Fall, God put some Godly teenage boys in our lives and gave me a peace that yes, you can raise a Godly child in this day and age. It may be a strange place to find a peace in my Mommy heart, but every week I watched the team my dad coaches at a small private Baptist school praise God for everything. They gave Him the glory in good times and continued to praise Him in the lowest times. I watched as multiple sets of 3 or 4 of high school football players huddle on one knee and prayed together before each and every game without the prompting of coaches or parents. I watched them praise God after injuries that could've been worse, a season ending loss by thanking Him for taking them so far, and praise during the happy times. I've read pieces of the testimonies of a few of them and it was hard to believe the words came from a teenager. They Facebook scripture and some deep thoughts that at 32 years old, make me think deep. Opposing coaches and fans have complimented their individual sportsmanship on the field. I pray daily for Nicholas to have a heart like those boys when he is a teenager.
***This is probably a good time to mention that these are observations based solely upon their actions I've witnessed on the football field and at church. Actions I have witnessed firsthand and not a biased opinion as a coach's daughter. I would be impressed with their character if I watched them from the stands as an opposing fan. I also want to say this: they have a normal, teenage, passionate feud with a rival school that has fueled some heated moments; I do not doubt for one minute that they have disagreements with their parents, get into normal teenage mischief, and I in no way think they are perfect, I know that no one is. I just admire their public proclamation of being a Christian teenager.***
Nicholas goes to Sunday school, he says his prayers at night, we read Bible stories, and we sing praise music with the Veggie Tales in the car and while we do chores a home. I worry about the temptations a teenage boy faces and how he will respond. I pray that he never hides the fact he has a heart that believes. I hope within the next few years as he watches these fine young men compete against schools who refuse to pray with them at midfield and mock their Christlike hearts, that he sees that they never lose their focus of having a Christ-like heart.
In the meantime I will continue to pray for my sweet son. I will pray on a daily basis that he has a heart that loves God and that he isn't afraid to show it. I pray that I am able to teach him how to grow as a Christian and that he grows to be an example of a Christ-like heart. I pray he is able to withstand temptations that will come his way. With prayer and by seeing the examples set by these young men, I find peace in raising a son in this day and age.