Life's Landmines Loom Ahead
Landmines Litter Our Inviting 21st Century Landscape
In an article entitled “What I’ve Learned,” veteran actor Burt Reynolds looks back and shares his personal experiences over the years. Reynolds is refreshingly candid as he reveals his triumphs, failures, and regrets in life. He concludes the interview saying, “I can tell a young person where all the mines are, but he’s probably going to have to step on them anyway.” Life’s landmines that loomed in the past are still activated to destroy the uninformed youth of today. They litter our inviting 21st century landscape with a potent charge that detonates upon impact. These mines lay hidden in a bottle of alcohol, a line of coke, or in the cyberspace of pornography. The seven deadly sins of pride, envy, gluttony, lust, anger, greed, and sloth will most definitely trigger the landmine every time.
Been There, Done That
I think we’re all familiar with the overused phrase, “Been there, done that.” As a parent, I find myself communicating that notion as I caution my own kids. Especially if I see my children headed toward a direction that leads to a world of destructive behavior. How I wish I could knock some sense into them by showing the raw footage of my misguided youth. But I can’t. It is those we love best who elude us most. I’m left to live my life before them. Follow me as I follow Christ. I can only keep to the path ahead while praying and pointing them in the right direction—toward Him. But kids in general have a tendency to be stubborn and hard of hearing. In my frustration I tell them, “You’ll never know what it feels like until you become a parent.”
Did Too, Did Not
Whenever I find my children out of control, I take comfort in this fictitious anecdote. After creating the heavens and the earth, God created Adam and Eve. And the first thing He said was "DON'T!" "Don't what?" Adam asked. "Don't eat the forbidden fruit." God said. "Forbidden fruit? We have forbidden fruit? Hey Eve...we have forbidden fruit!" "No way!" "Yes way!" "Do NOT eat the fruit!" said God. "Why?" "Because I am your Father and I said so!" God replied, wondering why He hadn't stopped creating after making the birds and the bees. A few days later, God caught His children sharing the very fruit he forbade them to eat! "Didn't I tell you not to eat the fruit?" God asked. "Uh huh," Adam replied. "Then why did you?" demanded the Father. "I don't know," said Eve. "She started it!" Adam said. "Did not!" "Did too!" "DID NOT!"
God's punishment was that Adam and Eve should have children of their own. Thus the pattern was set and it has never changed. But there is reassurance in the story: If you have persistently and lovingly tried to give your children wisdom and they haven't taken it, don't be hard on yourself. If an all-powerful God had trouble raising children, what makes you think it would be a piece of cake for you? Parents, you can have your own proverbial cake and eat it too if you take a believing bite out of what the Bible says. The book of Proverbs instructs parents to do their part, to train our children in the right way, and when they are old, they will not stray (Prov 22:6). And let the Lord shepherd them when they are of age. God willing, they may not have to trample on too many landmines along the way.
Copyright 2009, Gicky Soriano. All rights reserved.
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