I think every Christian parent prays their children will grow up to follow Jesus, to choose His example in life over ours, and to invest their heart in 'things that are above'.
My youngest babe is Blossom, herself now a mother and blooming in the role she had hoped for since early childhood. She would tell me all the time that she wanted to be a mother like me and my instruction to her was to be a better mother than I, and to teach her daughters to be a better mother than herself.
I felt then, and still do, that we should pray for each generation to surpass the one before in their relationship with Jesus so that every relationship they build in life - whether that be as a mother, father, friend, leader or server - increasingly carries the essence of Him.
My daughter will turn 23 next month and just as when she was a young child we still share our deepest thoughts and tell each other what God is doing in our lives and in our hearts. We often share life changing insights but as time goes by it's no longer a mother leading her young daughter, instead we've become two women seeking to encourage and inspire each other, using the Word of God as our guide.
Recently Blossom started a small home business making beautiful handmade baby and toddler clothes which she sells online. We were discussing the financial side of things and she told me about her desire to give generously in life and not be focused on money. She shared of the immense joy she experiences in doing good, being kind, and pursuing a generous attitude in all things.
My heart melted, such pride I felt for this young woman who has faced many struggles and trials in life these past eight or nine years. It's been hard to accept that only one out of my seven children loves Jesus but as she opened her heart that afternoon heartache fell by the wayside and I could only praise my wonderful and gracious Lord for His faithfulness in her life and mine.
I told her how much she inspires me, how proud I was of her resolve.
And you know what she said?
"But, mum, I've watched you live like that all my life, and I have seen how much you love God and how He's always provided for your needs...and I want to be like you, I want to have that relationship with Him, that same trust in His provision, that same generous heart."
I was speechless as tears filled my eyes.
Why am I telling you this?
Because I don't want you to lose heart if you're not yet seeing fruit in your children's lives.
Keep your mind on things above, seek to live a life worthy of Jesus and let your children see it all.
Let them watch you stumble (mine did many times!) then let them see you at the foot of the Cross laying all before Jesus and rising again refreshed, forgiven and renewed.
Don't hide your struggles, or your fears. You know you'll fall at Jesus' feet and grow into a deeper walk with Him inside your valleys, so let the children see this as it happens because you're teaching them to always look to God for the answer.
I didn't know until a few days ago how much of my life and relationship with Christ was being observed by my youngest daughter. My eyes are still overflowing with tears as I write about that moment, but the most precious thing which has my heart swelling with hope and thanks is that her 9 month old daughter will now be watching and learning and growing in relationship with God because of Blossom's own example. And I know her example will exceed mine.
Parenting is hard, and parenting children who turn their backs on Christ is shattering. But dear sister, they have been watching you all their lives. Pray for all your children every day, the saved and the prodigals...pray that they remember how you walked with Jesus, and pray they choose to walk even closer to Him than you.
Pray they seek eternal things above, and let go of the the temporal things of earth.
May the Lord BLESS you each and every day,
May He refresh your broken and discouraged hearts, and remind you of His goodness.