At this time of year, many are getting those they love more than themselves, more than life itself, ready to face another school year…in the world. They have sheltered them long enough, now they will go back into the crowd with the rest of the world. Are they ready, you are probably thinking, to face what is ahead of them?
Those who are sending their kids off to live at a college somewhere are wondering, did I teach them enough to make it in this world of differences, unholy cultures and ways, mixing in with those who do not love Jesus and keep His commandments? Or you are thinking simplistically, Did I teach them the importance of being clean by taking a shower EVERY day? Did they hear me when I said brushing your teeth is not just about good health, it’s doing those around you a favor by not smelling your breath? Many random thoughts go through our heads as parents when we get our kids ready to embark on this journey called life.
The better question is, WHO will go with them?
Jesus spent three years getting his band of followers ready to go, ready to be without Him physically, but with a new Friend, comforter, guide and most of all a constant companion to those who stick with Him and the mission ahead. The following passage prepares them to be ready with Truth of what they will face. It is a good reminder for us.
John 16, The Message
16 1-4 “I’ve told you these things to prepare you for rough times ahead. They are going to throw you out of the meeting places. There will even come a time when anyone who kills you will think he’s doing God a favor. They will do these things because they never really understood the Father. I’ve told you these things so that when the time comes and they start in on you, you’ll be well-warned and ready for them.
The Friend Will Come
4-7 “I didn’t tell you this earlier because I was with you every day. But now I am on my way to the One who sent me. Not one of you has asked, ‘Where are you going?’ Instead, the longer I’ve talked, the sadder you’ve become. So let me say it again, this truth: It’s better for you that I leave. If I don’t leave, the Friend won’t come. But if I go, I’ll send him to you.
8-11 “When he comes, he’ll expose the error of the godless world’s view of sin, righteousness, and judgment: He’ll show them that their refusal to believe in me is their basic sin; that righteousness comes from above, where I am with the Father, out of their sight and control; that judgment takes place as the ruler of this godless world is brought to trial and convicted.
12-15 “I still have many things to tell you, but you can’t handle them now. But when the Friend comes, the Spirit of the Truth, he will take you by the hand and guide you into all the truth there is. He won’t draw attention to himself, but will make sense out of what is about to happen and, indeed, out of all that I have done and said. He will honor me; he will take from me and deliver it to you. Everything the Father has is also mine. That is why I’ve said, ‘He takes from me and delivers to you.’
16 “In a day or so you’re not going to see me, but then in another day or so you will see me.”
Are your kids ready to go to school with the power of the Holy Spirit, their constant companion, living in them to guide and direct them, to give them wisdom, insight and understanding, with the power to be a difference in the world they will navigate this school year? WHO will go with them?
Dear Heavenly Father, Our hearts are overwhelmed with love and compassion for our kids, grandkids, nieces and nephews, and all their friends who will begin this school year. Our pray is that YOU will go with them, guide them, keep them close to You, with wisdom to face trouble and conquer it. I pray that they will know You, know Your Truth, know their enemy and be ready to face whatever comes their way with courage and confidence because of You in them. I pray that for all of us who will teach, drive them to school, serve them a meal or clean the classrooms when they leave each day to support them in the most excellent way…with Your Love in our hearts for them. Go with us, Emmanuel. May Your Spirit lead us. May we listen well. In Jesus Name, Amen