Monday, May 13, 2024

Directing the Wandering Child - Devon Harrison

Directing the Wandering Child
With all my heart I have sought You; Do not let me wander from Your commandments. Psalms 119:10 NASB 1995

My eleven-year-old son is a wanderer.

He is at the age where action figures, Legos, and superheroes no longer captivate him for hours. Iron Man and Captain America will need to conquer more fearsome foes to grab his attention. His favorite phrases have turned into “I’m bored” and “There’s nothing to do.” And mine have turned into “Hey Bored, I’m dad,” and “Go outside.” He follows me around—mere inches behind me. I ask him what he is doing and what he wants. All I get is, “Nothing,” or “I don’t know.” He is aimless with no destination—a kid who’s growing up.

The Israelites were in a similar state. The pillar of fire that led them by night did not burn in their hearts, nor did the manna entice their appetites. The promised land seemed unreachable. They grumbled, doubted, and wandered. They did not seek the Lord or grow up. And only two of the original twelve spies reached their destination.

Will my son die in the wilderness? Or fail to grow up? I don’t believe so. But just like him, we all wander at different times. We stay at dead-end jobs because they pay the bills, focus on problems instead of God’s promises, and make decisions based on feelings rather than solid principles. We wander and lose our aim because we don’t plan a path to our destination.

I must give my son things to do and learn different ways to help him find his way—reach his destination. He will pick up pinecones and help his mom with the dishes. He will have a destination; I’ll ensure it.

But as my son comes to me, we must go to the Father. With God, we have direction and a promise. And we become much more than wanderers.

Don’t let your children be directionless wanderers. Consult the one who gives perfect direction for you and them. 

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Devon Harrison is a dad who shares his home with four rambunctious boys, one wife, and a small pooch—and loves every minute of it.

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