I was almost run over today at the mall by a 10-year-old followed by a 6-year-old on her heels and a frazzled grandmother dragging behind. My daughter and I were at the mall looking for shoes for her two daughters. I have not been to a mall in many, many months and was way behind in my people watching, so as they shopped … I watched.
The grandmother looked frazzled, the two girls bored. Both little girls were dressed very cute … for teenagers! Dressing up is fun and there is a time and place. But, this was not dress-up. This was ‘who they were’. It was a statement. They had the lace fish net gloves, heels (I could almost hear the pediatricians groaning over damaged growth plates), bootie shorts (yes, their little cheeks hanging out) and accessories. The 10-year-old was on her cell phone talking to a friend and it went like this, “yeah, I can’t wait for you to see the new shoes I got. Yeah and I got a new outfit …”. I think you get the picture. It certainly explains the grandmother’s face. Everyone that knows me knows I would have sent them in to change before going to the mall. I often wonder why people want their children to grow up so fast. The only thing that I think is worse is when their mothers dress like teenagers.
Sometimes I feel this generation has lost so much simplicity and innocence. Remember Jesus said,
Mark 10:14 “Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid them not, for of such is the kingdom of God.”
Matthew 18:3 “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”
I wonder if He is sadden that the children are not children any more? I think as Christians we are expected to shield them from the world and to help them make the decisions of being …
a ‘peculiar people unto the Lord’
Deuteronomy 14:2 “For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God, and the LORD hath chosen thee to be a peculiar people unto himself, above all the nations that are upon the earth.”
“while walking worthy of their high calling.”
Ephesians 4:1-2 “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, entreat you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing forbearance to one another in love…”
Children can be raised IN the world and be successful, well liked, accepted and even popular without being OF the world. I am not sure if the parents are so wrapped up in being successful themselves that they translate that into their children’s lives, or if they expose their children to much older environments and simply let them have their way when they want to act older. You may recall a few months ago a heated controversy over moms and dads defending their little girls dance costumes and dance moves (click on the word ‘moves’ if you have not heard). It is unbelievable how much denial is going on of parents over their parenting. There is nothing wrong with trendy and cute but, giving up age appropriateness and rushing them into adulthood is not what God planned for our children. Jesus wants us to become more like children as we turn to Him. How can we explain our turning little children into mini adults? Why is everyone trying to copy Hollywood’s parents, lifestyles, etc. when they are all failing at everything but making money? You will not be the most popular parent sometimes, but God did not put you here as a parent to be popular, or even well liked. He put us here to be parents … good parents … examples for the worldly parents to follow, not for us to follow the worldly parents.