Shedding Some Light On a Convenience Culture


(This is a little sign I have hanging in my kitchen to remind me each day of the truth of which it speaks.)

We as a culture want what is convenient—quick, easy, efficient, comfortable, as little work as possible. We highly value convenience.

But should we?

Don’t get me wrong, I am very grateful for modern conveniences like washing machines and water heaters! And I mean that wholeheartedly because I’ve lived without both at various times in my life!
The problem lies where this desire for convenience permeates our parenting… and because parenting is area where we cannot rush or even control the process, the tension of living with what is “inconvenient” surfaces and our cravings for convenience stare us in the face.

When we place such high value on convenience that it undermines our relationships with our children and our parenting, things get very skewed….

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When Hovering Over Your Children Is a Good Thing

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.” {Genesis 1:1-2}

Hovering… the Hebrew word—rachaph, means to move gently, cherish, brood (warm, protect, cover); it is a word that denotes love.

The Hebrew phrase for formless, empty void could be translated as a desolate, desert waste.

Most of us have read the creation account—in which God spoke and it was so. Yet, here in Genesis 1:2 we are shown how a desolate desert waste was transformed into the beautiful masterpiece of creation that God made: it was quite the labor of love. It happened through the hovering—that is— through loving, cherishing, moving gently, and warming. It was cultivated and that cultivation produced a masterpiece. He is God and He could have chosen to only speak this transformation into existence, yet He felt it necessary to rachaph over the empty void… maybe to show us the way?

 We mothers have been given little lives to steward and mold.  We have been given a great responsibility to carry out His work— by allowing His Spirit to work through us as we gently cherish, love, cultivate and provide protection and warmth for our children—His creation.

I want to rachaph over my children so that their souls would grow to become the beautiful masterpieces that God created them to be. Before I knew Christ I was desolate, empty and void, and I do not ever {at all!} want that for them.

The scriptures teach us that all are born into sin—and I fail many times as a mother yet my desire is to be an imitator of God—to be as Christ to them—to rachaph over them just as He has over me. At times I do lose my patience; I am not always gentle or loving, yet I have in me His Spirit who gently, lovingly shows me the way and enables me to follow it.

 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.” Ezekiel 36:26-27

As we fail forward in mothering our children, let us remember to invite, acknowledge, and spend time with the Spirit—that we may be enabled to do His work—the rachaph work, over our children, so that their souls are not left unattended, empty and void.

I’m not saying we should try to be or take the place of the Holy Spirit to our children and I’m not saying we need to watch over their every move, ready to correct every last thing they do. On the contrary.  As we offer them love and grace— as we imitate Him, we point them to who God is. We need the Spirit’s help, and He wants to teach us His ways— to help us respond gently instead of harshly, to cherish them instead of treating them as if they are an inconvenience, to create a home atmosphere of warmth, acceptance, and protection instead of one of yelling, shame or fear, to cover over their sin and immaturity instead of exposing them or making them feel belittled for their mistakes, to move gently instead of always hurrying and rushing about, to be intentional instead of negligent… to point them to God instead of leaving them empty.